YOUNG JOCKEY Tom Marquand claimed he ticked off on a childhood dream after riding his first career Group One winner in Saturday’s Ranvet Stakes at Rosehill. Riding the William Haggas trained and Sheikh Ahmed bin Rashid Al Maktoum owned Addeybb, Marquand dictated a steady pace aboard the 6yo gelded son of Pivotal, also victorious in last year’s Wolferton Stakes winner at Royal Ascot. The pair contested and won the early lead and were at the front throughout the first half of the 2000m contest, with 2018 Australian Oaks winner Verry Elleegant giving chase a little over a length behind. But after Verry Elleegant turned on the heat as the field turned for home, Addeybb let her go before Marquand’s strong urgings reshook things once again and Addeybb took off to score by half a length on ground that was quicker than ideal according to his rider and trainer.
It was an eighth career success in 16 starts and a first top level win for Addeybb, who was runner-up in last season’s Group 1 Champion Stakes behind Magical. Last year’s winner, Godolphin’s Avilius, was best of the rest, finishing five and three-quarter lengths behind in third. Marquand appears to be at the top of his game in 2020 and the 21yo has now ridden 32 winners from 162 rides at a strike rate of 19.7% during the first three months of the year, with 20 of those victories in New South Wales. “A Group One is all I’ve dreamt of since childhood, an international Group One even more so, and an international Group One on an English horse is even better,” Marquand said. “Addeybb was extremely tough.
It’s on ground that he doesn’t really want or appreciate.” Addeybb became the first British trained winner of the race and a delighted Haggas said: “I thought Tom gave him an excellent ride and the horse showed plenty of guts and courage on ground that was drying up. “Tom thought it was on the fast side when he rode in the Golden Slipper and that it was only just good ground. The Queen Elizabeth was always the plan, but they have to race first and that’s by no means a certainty.” Harry Eustace, the travelling foreman for Haggas, added: “It was another peach, Marquand controlled it from the front. “I did say to Tom because he does love soft ground and he might take a bit longer to let himself down on this track and I think that was the case because he came back at the end and was well on top.”
Meanwhile, Gai Waterhouse’s Farnan obliged favourite backers when running out an impressive winner of the Group 1 Golden Slipper, the Not A Single Doubt colt providing his trainer with a seventh success in the race. “It’s a thrill and a relief that he’s won it, it’s an absolute dream come true,” Waterhouse said of Phoenix Thoroughbreds’ colt. “This is a very special race and it takes a really exceptional horse, both mentally and physically, to do it. You saw his barrier speed, you saw his cruising speed and then the toughness in the straight when he was being attacked by all the rest of the field. But he’s just too good.”