Windsor Castle Stakes
Listed, Ascot 17:35
£80,000 added,
2yo only,
5f, Class 1    
Tuesday 14th June 2016


1 Ardad 20/1
2 Savannah's Dream 100/1
3 Pedestal 14/1
NR: Bective (IRE), Ready To Roc (IRE)
22 ran Distances: 3¼l, nse, ½l
TIME 1m 2.56s (slow by 3.56s)

Ardad wins the Windsor Castle Stakes for John Gosden and Robert Havlin to round off day one



Robert Havlin gained his first Royal Ascot winner courtesy of 20/1 shot Ardad in the Listed Windsor Castle Stakes. Havlin held up the two-year-old in midfield early on before unleashing the son of Kodiac's devastating turn of foot inside the final furlong.

Ardad kept on well for Havlin's urgings to secure an impressive three and a quarter-length victory. This success in the five-furlong contest came just six days after John Gosden's colt was a comfortable one-length winner of a Yarmouth maiden.

Havlin remarked: "He won on fast ground at Yarmouth last time and it was a big learning experience for him. We went quite steady there and he relaxed well before putting the race to bed quite easily - it was like a piece of work for him. He showed no ill-effects after that, he was entered in this race and John Gosden would not have run him if he thought he did not have a chance.

"He is by Kodiac so we knew he would like cut in the ground. Obviously, you have to be worried about two-year-olds in this ground but he did it nicely.

"What I liked him about today was that he had good pace. He hit the line really hard and he might be able to get six furlongs. I have hit the crossbar a few times [at Royal Ascot] but thank God for John Gosden! He has kept faith in me."

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Gosden was registering his 40th winner at the Royal meeting and was delighted with the performance of the colt. He said: "He's a sweet horse. When he came to me I relaxed him and entered him in this race before he ever ran which is something I haven't done before because I liked the way he worked. He won his maiden nicely at Yarmouth last time and he deserved his place here. He won with some authority today.

"He is a talented horse with lots of speed. After coming to me from the breeze-up sales at Doncaster he took time as we needed to unwind his mind. He has done really well, he is now just a mellow horse, but he has shown a lot of class. We were also lucky with our draw as we followed the pace and that dictated the pace.

"It's soft ground but it is a little loose in the straight because of all the rain which has fallen. I didn't know he would handle the ground but he handled it nicely."

Gosden was also effusive in his praise of Havlin commenting: "He is the most fantastic guy. He is there every morning with me, he rides them work, he's a great horseman and is amazingly brave on difficult horses. He is a close friend and he has done a wonderful job - he truly deserves this. He is a good friend and a wonderful rider. He is what every trainer needs."

Two horses trained in America joined the line-up, but neither could make the places. The Wesley Ward-trained filly Big City Dreamin made the early pace but faded with a furlong to run and finished 16th of the 22 runners, while.

Drafted, from Eoin Harty's stable, was never in contention and finished one placed behind his US colleague.

William Buick, who rode Drafted in the colours of Godolphin, said: "He's won on dirt, and today he was asked to run on very soft ground - I think you can put it down to that. We got into a position to challenge, but he just couldn't quicken up to the leaders."


Windsor Castle Stakes (Listed)
£80,000 added, 2yo only, 5f, Class 1
22 ran
Going: Soft

Pos Dr D Horse SP Jockey Weight Trainer Age
1st (1) Ardad (IRE) 20/1 R Havlin
J H M Gosden 2
2nd (6) Savannah's Dream 100/1 P Makin
D O'Meara 2
3rd (8) nse Pedestal (IRE) 14/1 R L Moore
A P O'Brien 2
4th (24) ½ Full Intention 33/1 R Kingscote
Tom Dascombe 2
5th (19) hd Callender (IRE) 50/1 C D Hayes
P J Prendergast 2
6th (3) ¾ Pretty Vacant 25/1 Andrea Atzeni
R Varian 2
7th (2) nk Yulong Baobei (IRE) 16/1 S Foley
M Halford 2
8th (18) 1 Just An Idea (IRE) 100/1 M Harley
H J L Dunlop 2
9th (17) hd Top Score 33/1 James Doyle
S bin Suroor 2
10th (11) s.h Leontes 66/1 David Probert
A M Balding 2
11th (13) hd Stringybark Creek 100/1 G Baker
M R Channon 2
12th (23) Battaash (IRE) 11/1 P Hanagan
C Hills 2
13th (14) Bolt Phantom (USA) 25/1 S M Levey
I Mohammed 2
14th (12) 2 Fayez (IRE) 25/1 Harry Bentley
D O'Meara 2
15th (5) nk Tomily (IRE) 13/2 P J Dobbs
R Hannon 2
16th (7) ½ Big City Dreamin (USA) 6/1 L Dettori
Wesley Ward 2
17th (10) ½ Drafted (USA) 7/1 W Buick
Eoin Harty 2
18th (16) ½ Ambiguity (IRE) 33/1 D O'Brien
Joseph P O'Brien 2
19th (21) ¾ Big Lachie 100/1 William Carson
J A Osborne 2
20th (4) 4 Mister Trader 11/4f P J Smullen
D Bunyan 2
21st (9) 2 Copper Knight (IRE) 16/1 Jim Crowley
H Palmer 2
22nd (20) 6 Kananee (USA) 16/1 James McDonald
S bin Suroor 2
NR (22) Bective (IRE) 33/1 R P Whelan
J F Levins 2
NR (15) Ready To Roc (IRE) 20/1 Oisin Murphy
J P Murtagh 2