Midday crowned Nassau queen

Midday was hailed as ’the queen of Goodwood’ following her unprecedented third triumph in the Markel Insurance Nassau Stakes at Goodwood.

Midday was hailed as ’the queen of Goodwood’ following her unprecedented third triumph in the Markel Insurance Nassau Stakes at Goodwood.

Questions had been raised about the five-year-old following her comprehensive defeat at the hands of Misty For Me in Ireland last time, but Midday silenced her critics with a comfortable victory in the hands of Tom Queally.

Trainer Sir Henry Cecil always retained full faith in the daughter of Oasis Dream and her victory capped a memorable week for the team, with Frankel having blazed away with the Sussex Stakes on Wednesday.

Barefoot Lady led for a long way in the 10-furlong Group One but once she weakened, Midday arrived on the scene still travelling well within herself.

The result was scarcely in doubt during the last couple of furlongs and when Queally asked for her effort, Midday hit the front in the final furlong.

Last year’s dual Oaks winner Snow Fairy came from behind and briefly threatened to make a race of it, but Midday was two lengths too strong.

Cecil’s Principal Role was last for much of the journey but came through late to grab third under Richard Hughes, a further one and a quarter lengths adrift.

“I am very pleased. Last year she became one of three to have won the race two times and now she has broken the record and won three,” said Cecil.

“She has won six Group Ones in her career and been unlucky not to win another two or three more. She is a marvellous mare.

“I don’t know what happened when she got beat in Ireland last time, but she was probably beaten by a very good filly.

“I am very happy and have had a great week.

“Hopefully she will go for the Yorkshire Oaks, but we’ll feel our way and she’ll tell us what we should do.

“She might go to Ascot (for the Champion Stakes) but let’s see, all options are open.”

Midday won the Breeders’ Cup Filly & Mare Turf back in 2009 but she was only second at last year’s event and Cecil implied that another Stateside trip may not be on the agenda.

“We’ll leave it completely open, but I don’t especially like Churchill Downs,” he concluded.

Queally was equally pleased to deliver an eighth win in the race for Cecil.

He added: “She is the queen of Goodwood now. She loves it here and she travelled very well.

“We started to get racing early but I was able to get her back on the bridle and give her a breather.”

If Midday does make the trip to York for the Darley Yorkshire Oaks on August 18, she could clash with both Snow Fairy and fourth-placed Crystal Capella again.

Ed Dunlop, trainer of Snow Fairy, said: “She’s in at York. we were obviously beaten by a better horse but it’s a huge improvement on her first run and Frankie said she will definitely improve again.

“She would have liked a stronger pace. She quickens off a strong pace but they went very slow early.

“We were getting back there and it’s a very good run.”

Sir Michael Stoute was satisfied with Crystal Capella’s effort, with Jimmy Fortune taking the mount after intended rider Ryan Moore suffered a nasty fall earlier in the afternoon.

The six-year-old’s best performances have come over 12 furlongs and on easier ground so Stoute admitted it was a gamble to let her take her chance.

“She has run a blinder. We knew it was dicey but we can’t go in front with her - she has got to be relaxed so we knew it was going to be difficult,” said the Newmarket handler.

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