5th Aug 2014
Last Wednesday’s Group 1 Sussex Stakes was billed as a match between last year’s winner; dual group 1 winner Toronado and champion 3 year old colt elect Kingman. The Group 1 race attracted only four runners with much of the miler division being scared off by the quality of the opposition.
The small field led to a tactical affair and a very sedate pace was set with the first half mile being run in 57.19 seconds. Toronado injected some pace into the race two furlongs out but it wasn’t enough to shake Kingman and once he got balanced on Goodwood’s undulating surface, he hit top gear to fly by the opposition.
Toronado’s jockey Richard Hughes said he hit the two-furlong marker “full belt. I thought, he’ll have to be good to get by me. He was brilliant at Ascot, the way he went by me. I was riding a different horse today, a seasoned horse and got first run off a slow pace and he still beat me. I may have to bring a gun the next day.”
John Gosden- trainer of Kingman spoke in glowing terms about the colt. “He’s got a gear and then he’s got another gear. Like an old MGB GT I had, you used to get to fifth and then flick a button and go again. You can flick a button with him. He’s improved, he’s got wiser, cleverer, bigger and stronger. He’s got great shoulders and a neck on him, he’s one of those lovely athletes. He’s three now, he looks as good as a four-year-old.”
Gosden commented on the sedate pace that was set by Kingman’s rivals “It was a clever way to try to beat him but his class shone through.
“Actually he has the class to do it under hands and heels. It reminds me I had him in the July Cup and if truth be known, he would have won it.
“That’s not me being loud-mouthed after the event because I feel it was a statement of fact. I ran a lovely horse called Gregorian, who was unlucky not to be second, and I wouldn’t put them in the same bit of work.”
All of us at the Irish National Stud are delighted to see a son of Invincible Spirit excel at the highest level and look forward to his next start, be it in the Prix Jacques le Marois or the QEII Stakes on Champions Day!