All eyes were on Shadwell’s unbeaten Baaeed in the official feature of the five days of Glorious Goodwood, Wednesday’s Group 1 Sussex Stakes, and he certainly did not disappoint his burgeoning fan club with a smooth success.
Settled towards the rear of seven runners in the mile highlight, the homebred 4yo colt by Sea The Stars was edged closer early in the straight by Jim Crowley before quickening clear approaching the final furlong.
Trained by William Haggas he has now won nine consecutive races, the latest five all at Group One level. He did not actually make his racecourse debut until early June last year and is currently officially rated the best horse in the world.
Crowley said: “He's never going to be exuberant and win by ten lengths but the feeling I had from him between the three and two furlongs out, no horse can give me that feeling.
"He has a turn of foot, you can put him anywhere in a race, he ticks all the boxes. It's going to be really interesting when he goes a mile and a quarter next time, I'm looking forward to it."
UAE weighing room stalwart delivered Trillium with a perfect late challenge to land the main juvenile contest on the card, the 5f Group 3 Molecomb Stakes for Richard Hannon and Rockliffe Stud.
Homebred and only filly among eight runners, the daughter of No Nay Never was runner-up on debut at Goodwood before losing her maiden tag at Newbury 12 days ago, both races over 6f. She coped admirably with the drop in trip but clearly stays 6f well so connections have plenty of options.
Hannon said: "She has always been a lovely filly and I was amazed she didn't win here first time. She's starting to look like a very good 2yo.
"We'll look at something like the Prix Morny and perhaps the Breeders' Cup Juvenile Sprint. I didn't put her in the Lowther because she wasn't showing this sort of speed then. She's homebred so it means that much more.
"She's not silly, she doesn't have to sprint. She looks like a very tall, strong juvenile and I'd love to think she's a filly for next year.”
The meeting kicked off with the only Purebred Arabian race of the week, the Group 1 International Stakes and the mile contest was won stylishly by Lady Princess, heroine of the contest last year and also victorious in Abu Dhabi’s Sheikh Zayed bin Sultan Al Nahyan Jewel Crown in December.
Jim Crowley was in the saddle for trainer Thomas Fourcy and owner Khalifa bin Sheail Al Kuwari.
For 3yos, the following 1m4f handicap went to Godolphin, Charlie Appleby and William Buick courtesy of Secret State, the Dubawi colt landing his fourth consecutive victory after finishing second on debut in April. His previous victory was at Royal Ascot in the King George V Stakes, a heritage handicap, also over 1m4f.
Appleby said: “That Royal Ascot race worked out well and physically he has done nothing but improve from the early summer to where we are today.
“I think the most logical step, going forward, will be to go to the Great Voltigeur. I know William has mooted the St Leger, but it’s baby steps as we go up in class.
“We were, as I say, confident coming here today with a vision that this will be a springboard to the Great Voltigeur.
“There’s a long way to go to the St Leger, but I think the Great Voltigeur will be the ideal race. Most likely, we’ll see the St Leger winner in the Great Voltigeur.
“There will be a question mark whether he stays the longer trip but the Voltigeur will be a great indicator. Hopefully then we can have a nice healthy discussion after.”
For fillies and mares over 7f, the Group 3 Oak Tree Stakes went to Oscula, saddled by George Boughey and who led, literally on the line, completing a rapid double for Buick, this time in the colours of a Nick Bradley Racing partnership.
A 3yo Galileo Gold filly, she has been the model of consistency and has finished out of the first four only thrice in 17 outings, winning five previously highlighted by a Group Three in Deauville last August.