Royal Ascot Day Two: Lord North Shows Up For Gosden In Prince Of Wales’s Stakes

The second day of the 2020 Royal Ascot meeting was highlighted by the Group 1 Prince Of Wales’s Stakes, a 1 1/4-mile contest for 4-year-olds and up. James Doyle and Lord North quicked impressively in the final furlong to win going away, defeating three previous Royal Ascot winners in Japan, Barney Roy, and Addeybb in the process.

Lord North, a 4-year-old son of Dubawi, was conditioned by trainer John Gosden for his 52nd victory at the Royal Meeting. The colt won a Group 3 race at Haydock on June 7 to kick off his 2020 season, and is now two-for-two on the year.

His Prince Of Wales’s triumph earned Lord North an expenses-paid berth in the Breeders’ Cup Turf this fall at Keeneland.

The seven-strong field entered the final furlong virtually in a line across the course, but Lord North demonstrated an outstanding turn of foot to come home comfortably by three and three quarters lengths from Addeybb. Barney Roy crossed the line third, and Japan was fourth.

“Lord North was gelded (after 2019 spring campaign), he needed to be,” Gosden said. “He was tormenting himself. Testosterone is the most dangerous drug in the world, and he is a lovely horse to be around now.

“Lord North has got better and better. He is very powerful and, for a gelding, he has a great body to him. I was looking at the race and talking to Peter [Shoemark, John Gosden’s Racing Office Manager] and I thought this race was winnable for Lord North, so at 9:55am we put him – it was very late.”

“I think when John [Gosden] takes a horse into a race like this, you do have to prick your ears,” Doyle said. “Obviously, Lord North looked quite unexposed coming into it and he has gone through his grades. He won the Brigadier Gerard nicely up at Haydock but looked to get a bit tired, and John said he’d definitely improved a lot for that run. Going into this, the vibes were all pretty confident from Mr Gosden’s camp.”

What a performance! 🚀

Lord North goes from last to first with a devastating turn of foot to win the Prince Of Wales’s Stakes for trainer John Gosden and jockey @the_doyler#RoyalAscot pic.twitter.com/i6M7u8cn2c

— Ascot Racecourse (@Ascot) June 17, 2020

In Wednesday’s first race, William Knight saddled his first Royal winner when Sir Busker was partnered to a 3/4-length success by jockey Oisin Murphy in the Silver Royal Hunt Cup. The 4-year-old by Sir Prancealot won his first start of the season on June 2 at Newcastle.

“(Sir Busker) was my first runner from the new yard, and my father died that morning, so he means quite a lot to me, this horse,” said Knight, who moved from West Sussex to Newmarket in May. “It is a great facility that we are in in Newmarket, and it’s just lovely to have started off so well and to have my first Royal Ascot winner is the icing on the cake. Elated, very, very happy. It is such a shame that we can’t enjoy it all with the owners, Kennet Valley, because they are such a lovely group of people; I’m sure there would have been a good booze-up in the car park afterwards, but we will have to wait and get home to do that.”

Ryan Moore scored his 60th victory at the Royal Meeting in the day’s second race, piloting Aidan O’Brien trainee Russian Emperor to a half-length triumph in the Group 3 Hampton Court Stakes. The 3-year-old son of Galileo out of multiple Group 1 winner Atlantic Jewel (Fastnet Rock) may be considered for the Epsom Derby next out.

“He is a lovely colt, straightforward and with a good attitude,” said Moore. “He was very professional; he has had the benefit of a couple of runs this year and let us see if he will keep progressing. He has a very good pedigree – his dam was exceptional in Australia. I think he will be a nice horse going forward for the rest of the year.”

Jockey Jim Crowley rode his fourth winner of the week when delivering Hukum with a perfectly timed challenge to take the mile and a half King George V Handicap by half a length in the afternoon’s third race. It was also a fourth win of the week for owner Hamdan Al Maktoum while it was a first ever Royal Ascot success for trainer Owen Burrows.

“As a kid and when I was battling around Fontwell and Plumpton 20 years ago, I would never have dreamed I would be here training a Royal Ascot winner for someone like Sheikh Hamdan,” Burrows said. “All thanks to him for having the trust in me to do the job. I was very fortunate to have had a great grounding at Sir Michael Stoute’s where I was around good horses and you can pick up plenty – I have just been very fortunate.”

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