At some point Hollie Doyle will be running out of firsts.
Having become the first female jockey to win a Classic when Nashwa won the Prix de Diane at Chantilly last month, Doyle became the first female rider to win the Group One Nassau Stakes at Glorious Goodwood on Thursday.
A regular visitor to Hong Kong to compete in the International Jockeys’ Championship, Doyle is riding the crest of a wave and gave Nashwa a ride full of confidence, settling the filly in last in the early stages and coming with a wide run to pass the entire field in the final 400m.
“I got here today and Mr Gosden told me to ride her quietly and get her to switch off,” Doyle said. “In her work between France and here she had been on it and a bit keen, so I rode her like the best horse in the race really.
“Her performance in France was excellent and that came just 16 days after Epsom. She had a really hard race at Chantilly last time and she had plenty of time between now and then to recuperate.”
Doyle is becoming used to winning the biggest races at the biggest meetings in the world and in Nashwa she has found the horse she has dreamed about.
“She’s my world really at the moment, isn’t she?” Doyle said. “I’m just really lucky to be involved with her. She’s the horse of a lifetime and if it wasn’t for [owner] Imad Al Sagar giving me this opportunity, I might not have enjoyed days like this.
“It’s always great to win here. You get an amazing reception and there is a great atmosphere, so it’s great to ride big winners here.”
It was just two years ago that Al Sagar appointed Doyle as his retained rider and she is determined to make as little of her gender as possible.
“I hope it can open other owners’ eyes and make them realise that it doesn’t really matter what you are. If you can get the job done, that’s all that matters,” Doyle said.
As for Nashwa, she has now laid claim to the mantle of best three-year-old filly in Europe this season but there is no immediate plan for her to emulate Doyle and start beating the boys.
“We have the option to take on the colts but I don’t really see the point of that at this stage,” Doyle said. “She’s one of the best three-year-old fillies around right now so we’ll just utilise that.
“It’s music to my ears that she will stay in training at four and she’s flourishing with age. Every time I sit on her I think she’s grown and I think she’ll be a different filly as well next year.”
Hong Kong owner Boniface Ho Ka-kui could have a potential Melbourne Cup contender on his hands after his Deauville Legend finished a good second to New London in the Group Three Gordon Stakes (2,400m).
The three-year-old is currently trained by James Ferguson but the trainer is not sure if he will be granted the chance to prepare the horse for his Australian campaign.
“He’ll travel down at the end of the season and it’s completely up to the owner what happens,” Ferguson said.
“He’s a massive international owner and the vast majority of his horses are in Australia and you can understand why with the prize money in Australia being so good.
“This horse is going to earn him a lot more money down there than he will up here and it’s up to him if the horse heads down there for me or with somebody else.”
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