Last year, Manduro had to play second fiddle to Ouija Board in the Prince of Wales’s Stakes. But this time the five-year-old dark bay called the tune and, ridden by Stephane Pasquier, powered home to win the 10-furlong Group One contest from last year’s Irish Derby hero, the much-fancied Dylan Thomas.
Trained in France by the superlative Andre Fabre and owned and bred by the German Baron Von Ullman, this was international racing at its height. By Monsun, also the sire of Shirocco, whom Fabre produced to champion class last year, we should hear much more of Manduro. He has an ambitious list of targets – the Prix Jacques Le Marois, the Arc and the Breeders’ Cup Classic.
For sheer class, however, today’s plaudits must go to Nannina. Trained by John Gosden to win the Coronation Stakes at the 2006 Royal meeting, Cheveley Park Stud’s homebred filly rocketed away from the rest of the Windsor Forest Stakes field to go three lengths clear. She was the only Group One winner in the field, and given her preferred fast ground she easily turned the tables on her Epsom conqueror Echelon, also owned and bred by Cheveley Park.
John Gosden went home with another piece of silverware after the Kingmambo colt Royal Oath stole the Royal Hunt Cup – jockey Jimmy Fortune’s third winner of the day. It must go some way to making up for missing the ride on Authorized in the Derby.
And it was Authorized’s green and gold colours which Fortune wore to win the first race of the day, the Jersey Stakes. Peter Chapple-Hyam saddled the progressive Tariq for the Derby victor’s Kuwaiti owners Saleh Al Homeizi and Imad Al Sagar. Second was the favourite, the Danzig-sired US Ranger, trained in France by Jean Claude Rouget and owned by Michael Tabor.
Keep up to date with all the action from Royal Ascot on horseandhound.co.uk, and don’t miss Horse & Hound’s full report complete with fantastic photos in next Thursday’s magazine (28 June, ’07)