Queen Anne Stakes 2011 

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Canford Cliffs King of Queen Anne Stakes

1 Canford Cliffs 11/8
2 Goldikova 5/4F
3 Cityscape 14/1
7 ran Distances: 1l, 1¾l, 2¼l
TIME 1m 38.38s (fast by 0.62s)

The duel that everyone has been waiting for didn’t disappoint as Canford Cliffs stalked last year’s winner Goldikova throughout the race before going on to win the Queen Anne Stakes by a length from the French mare.

Canford Cliffs beating Goldikova and Cityscape

Canford Cliffs

The Richard Hannon-trained four-year-old has now won at three consecutive Royal Meetings, having landed the Coventry Stakes in 2009 and last year’s St James’s Palace Stakes.

Jockey Richard Hughes declared the winner to be the best horse he’s ever ridden, saying: “Olivier Peslier rode a tactical race. He wouldn’t kick and I couldn’t kick until he did. My concern three [furlongs] out was that the race was starting to happen as Frankie Dettori came up beside me on Rio De La Plata.

“It was hard to pull it off. Olivier was quickening but he wanted to get as close to the winning post as he could before kicking. I like the way Canford Cliffs put his head down and galloped to the line. Sometimes he doesn’t do that at home once he has passed his lead horse.”

Richard Hannon, the jockey’s father-in-law, said: “These kind of horses don’t come along very often. He had a good lead from Goldikova and Hughesie didn’t lose sight of her. Thankfully when it came to it he was able to go by her. It’s a shame really for anyone to beat the mare as she’s been so good but someone has to take her on.

“I get pretty emotional about him - it’s hard not to, we spend so much time with these horses. His real strength is his high cruising speed together with a turn of foot.”

Referrring to Canford Cliffs’ impending retirement to Coolmore Stud at the end of the season, Hannon added: “I’d love to have him back for next year but I don’t suppose I’ll be allowed to.”


Starting Price
Beaten Distance
Canford Cliffs
R Hannon
R Hughes
9st 0lbs
11 - 8
F Head
O Peslier
8st 11lbs
5 - 4
1 length
R Charlton
R L Moore
9st 0lbs
14 - 1
1 3/4 length
Rio De La Plata
S bin Suroor
L Dettori
9st 0lbs
25 - 1
2 1/4 lengths
Ransom Note
B W Hills
M Hills
9st 0lbs
50 - 1
6 lengths
Cape Blanco
A P O'Brien
J P Spencer
9st 0lbs
8 - 1
5 lengths
Flash Dance
F Head
M Barzalona
8st 11lbs
100 - 1
6 lengths



Richard Hannon junior, assistant to his trainer father Richard, said: "With Paco Boy last year, we were getting sick of seeing Goldikova's arse to be totally honest - everywhere we went, she was there and she probably cost us over a million and a half in prize money. You don't enjoy beating a filly like that but you certainly appreciate it. Unfortunately, there had to be a second today.

"I saw Hughsie wanting to sit last and thought that we were going to get some welly if it went wrong. But he is a really good horse and probably capable of picking up anything from anywhere.

"They went a very fast pace and he was able to deal with it. He always carries a bit of weight but that is just him - he carries plenty of weight and he tends to hit the front and think that he done enough but then go again if he has to.

"I think that we will leave him at a mile. We will discuss it with the owners and I wouldn't write anything off but he is nearly unbeatable over a mile and if it's not broke, don't fix it.

"We will look at the Sussex Stakes, the Breeders' Cup, there's a race in Japan and the Hong Kong Mile. There are so many races that we will just pick our way and run him where we think he is right."



Freddy Head was gracious in defeat after Goldikova finished second to Canford Cliffs in the Group One Queen Anne Stakes but the French trainer is adamant his superstar mare is as good as she ever was.

The great mare, sent off the 5/4 favourite, was bidding for a 14th win at the top level and a second successive triumph in the mile contest, but failed by a length as the Richard Hannon-trained winner swept by her deep inside the final furlong.

Head commented: "I am very happy - this is racing. Canford Cliffs is a very good horse and was the best horse on the day but Goldikova ran a great race.

"The winner was sitting behind us; he followed us and had a lovely run through. We perhaps came there a bit early and saw daylight very early but that is how it usually works out for her.

"The mile here is a bit long, it is a bit far for her and she has a job getting the distance here."

Goldikova, who is the only horse in history to have won the same Breeders' Cup race on three occasions, having landed the Breeders' Cup Mile in 2008, 2009 and 2010, received rousing applause upon her return to the Ascot paddock.

Head reflected: "I was very thrilled with that. The people here know a champion."

As to the future, Head is aiming the six-year-old at a fourth Breeders' Cup Mile, and is hoping the Anabaa mare can clinch a second win in the Prix Jacques Le Marois along the way.

He said: "I think she ran a top, top race and is as good as ever. If all goes well we will follow the same path as before with Deauville in August for the Prix Jacques le Marois and then on to the Breeders' Cup to try to win a fourth Breeders' Cup Mile."

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