Global Weekly Review: Godolphin journey to Ascot begins with a flourish
Royal Ascot approaches, regally-bred Glorious Journey makes a sparkling racecourse debut, and Australian legend Darren Beadman writes another chapter in his remarkable racing story.
There has been no shortage of action for Godolphin followers over the past few days, and that interest is certain to be increased as final touches are added for the most important five days Flat racing next week.
Splashing out 2.6m guineas for a yearling brings with it a certain amount of anxiety, but that was quickly put to one side as Glorious Journey displayed admirable grit to win a two-year-old race, over six furlongs, on Newmarket's July Course in the hands of William Buick
Trainer Charlie Appleby said the Dubawi colt had been showing promise in his home work, hence the decision to run him in June.
"I was delighted the way he has come out of his first race. There was not much pace early, but he was able to quicken.
"I think we should look at stepping him up to seven furlongs, but whether that is at the (Newmarket) July Meeting is another matter. We will see how he progresses," Appleby added.
Glorious Journey, bred by Normandie Stud, is out of the Dansili mare Fallen For You, winner of the G1 Coronation Stakes. He is an ideal stallion prospect if he can add to his record on the racecourse.
The coming seven days are crucial as plans for the Royal Meeting are finalised. Appleby, who expects to have more than 20 runners over the five days, has ruled out the G2 Ribblesdale Stakes for Sobetsu.
The classy Godolphin filly is also among the top contenders for the G1 Prix de Diane at Chantilly on Sunday. "She will work on Wednesday, and if she impresses, then we will take her to France. She will not be running at Ascot," the trainer added.
In Australia, Impending lived up to the potential he displayed in his juvenile days by winning the G1 Stradbroke Handicap, Queensland's biggest race, at Doomben.
His trainer, Darren Beadman, recently took control of Godolphin's operations at Osborne Park and Crown Lodge in New South Wales following the departure of John O'Shea, and he will remain interim Head Trainer until recently-appointed James Cummings takes over.
Beadman, an Australian Hall Of Fame jockey, unfortunately missed saddling Impending himself as he was confined to a hospital bed suffering the effects of a virus.
But he could not contain his delight. "It was a great day for all of us at Godolphin. What a thrill," he added.
Very few Hall Of Fame jockeys go on to become G1-winning trainers. Beadman has now joined the elite.