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Tremendous Royal Ascot first day for Godolphin ends on a high

Racenews

Sound And Silence led home a one-two for Godolphin and trainer Charlie Appleby in the Listed five-furlong Windsor Castle Stakes at Royal Ascot, completing a fantastic treble for Godolphin on the opening day of the meeting, Tuesday, June 20.

Runner-up Rousselinfo-icon (James Doyle) raced on the pace in the early stages while Sound And Silence (William Buick) was settled in mid division.

Roussel fought his way to the front and was joined by Sound And Silence with under a furlong to race. Both horses battled gamely, with Sound And Silence edging a neck ahead near the line in a time of 59.20s.

A delighted Appleby said: “The two-year-olds have been in great order. The team have done a fantastic job. 

“We’ve been lucky with the way the horses have been coming into the meeting at home and I couldn’t have been any happier with the way they looked.

“With Sound And Silence, I was disappointed with him last time in the National Stakes [Sandown, finished fourth] where he just emptied out there but he had a dirty scope that day.

“I put the cheekpieces on him today as I thought it is a big day and there are lots of horses, so let’s not take any chances and let’s keep the horse honest.

“William said that they just couldn’t go quick enough for him and he was travelling so well, that he had to take him back.

“I’m pleased with the second horse Roussel as well. He came from the breeze-ups and we’ve eased off on him since he won at Leicester.

“I’m just delighted to get a winner on the board. It’s been a fantastic day for Godolphin.”

William Buick said: “I came there to win my race and he’s a real fast horse – five furlongs is his absolute maximum – and he probably had to dig deep into the basement in the last 50 yards, which he really did for me. 

“The second horse is going to improve a lot – it’s only his second run. They are two nice horses, two fast two-year-olds, and it was a great result for Charlie. It’s obviously lovely to win but in the Godolphin silks and for Charlie, it’s particularly special.

“We’ve always thought a lot of Sound And Silence at home; he showed up early; a real natural horse and a lovely mover. 

“He won very well at Newmarket first time and he wasn’t really tuned to win first time – he did it through quality – and it confused me when he got beat at Sandown. But a fast-run race today really suited him.”

Asked what it meant to ride a double on the first day of Royal Ascot, Buick replied: “You come into this week and the mood changes in the house the week before. 

“It’s really special and it has an effect on you. It’s such a prestigious meeting and to get on the board here means everything for everyone involved.”

James Doyle said of Roussel: “He ran a good race. I travelled almost too well and I was getting there quite easily. 

“William came to me quickly and to be fair to my mount he stuck his head out and rallied again. 

“They have been working quite closely at home so it was about the right result. It is a good day for the team – I can't complain.”