bet365 Lennox Stakes
|Group 2, Goodwood
7f, Class 1
|Tuesday 29th July 2014|
1 Es Que Love 7/1
2 Toormore 5/6F
9 Anjaal 25/1
NR: Gregorian (IRE), Here Comes When (IRE), Professor
7 ran Distances: nk, ½l, 1¾l
TIME 1m 24.55s (slow by 0.55s)
Clive Cox's Es Que Love is victorious in the Group 2 Bet365 Lennox Stakes
Winning rider Adam Kirby: "I'm really pleased. We all thought we were coming here with a good chance and he travelled very well throughout."
Trainer Clive Cox is hopeful that Es Que Love could have a productive second half to 2014 after the five-year-old got up by a neck to defeat odds-on favourite Toormore.
“I’m delighted to win this because we’ve missed out a couple of times before with Dunelight and it’s a race I’ve always wanted to win so it’s nice to get it in the bag,” said Cox. “We’ve won a Group Two and he’s well-entered now for the rest of the year. I’m not sure where we’ll go but he’s versatile on trip, he’s even run over five furlongs but I think this is his best distance.
“He is versatile in that he is quick enough for six furlongs but is clearly able over seven. I think this is his ground today – he enjoyed that very much. He is in the Hungerford and the Park Stakes and we will see how we go in between. .
“I am so pleased. I have a great team at home – Kevin Harris rides him at home everyday. It was nobody’s fault there was no pace in the Hackwood Stakes and Adam (Kirby) took a calculated decision taking it up two furlongs out and he didn’t quite last home.
“We came here with that confidence – we knew that we had to ride him a little bit more patiently – and Adam did a super job.
“He has always been a good horse and I am just grateful to have a horse of this calibre in the yard. That’s how he works at home in the morning and we just wanted to bottle it and bring it here today.”
Paying tribute to the winning rider, Cox added: ““When Adam rode his first winner for Gay Kelleway around Wolverhampton, he came and rode for me a horse called Ionian Spring shortly after. Ionian Spring was a difficult ride – Pat Eddery used to get on really well with him – and Adam jumped on him as a 7lb claimer and I had never seen the like of somebody settle a horse so easily.
“Then he formed a good relationship with a sprinter we had called Out After Dark, who won the Gosforth Cup and the Portland. I am pleased to say that we have shared many successes since and I am delighted to have a man of his calibre on board.”
It was a 24th Goodwood win for Cox and his seventh at Glorious Goodwood.
Trainer Richard Hannon remains confident Toormore can make his mark at Group One level again following his neck second.
The three-year-old, who was the champion two-year-old of Europe last season, had not run up to expectations since winning the Group Three Craven Stakes at Newmarket in April. He was last seen finishing sixth of seven in the Group One St James’s Palace Stakes over a mile at Royal Ascot.
Hannon said: “Toormore has run a good race. It probably suited the winner because he has better turn of foot.
“Our horse has run better than he did at Ascot, so we will probably look at something similar.
“Obviously, he was a very good two-year-old but is not as good a three-year-old. That’s all there is to it. He is still a very good horse and there are plenty of big days left in him.
“He will get back to his Group One days but we need to win something and then go back up there.”
The trainer was also responsible for the third home Anjaal, who was a half-length behind his stablemate. The son of Bahamian Bounty was also coming in on the back of a run at Royal Ascot, where he finished 12th in the Group Three Jersey Stakes over seven furlongs.
Hannon added: “That is the first time Anjaal has run a decent race since winning the July Stakes last year.
“He has lost his Group Two penalty now, so we will look at something similar for him at either seven furlongs or a mile.”
Bet365 Lennox Stakes, Group 2
£150,000 added, 3yo plus, 7f, Class 1
Going: Good to Firm