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ASCOT, BERKSHIRE, ENGLAND – Ziad Galardi’s Mountain Angel improved upon his fifth-place effort in last year’s edition, storming home strongly to win Thursday’s Wolferton Stakes on Day 3 of the 2020 Royal Ascot Meet.
Released from the barriers at 6/1 odds stateside under James Doyle, Mountain Angel raced in midfield through the early going. Up front, his Roger Varian stablemate Prince Eiji applied pressure to the pacesetting Forest Ranger as the field settled and rounded the far turn.
Near the top of the stretch, Prince Eiji moved up to take the lead and led the cavalry charge home. Beginning to advance along the outer rail, Mountain Angel surged past Prince Eiji 1 furlong out and drew off powerfully for a 2 1/4-length victory.
Under a rainy sky that created a soft going, Mountain Angel completed the 10-furlong event in a final time of 2:11.90.
“He did it, it worked out perfectly for him,” Doyle said. “Today, the rain has come for him nicely, as he relishes cut in the ground, and it couldn’t have been much smoother. He travelled around really good.”
The 5/2 stateside co-favorite Sir Dragonet was no match for the winner, but he did sweep past the other runners in the final jumps to take a narrow second over Regal Reality, Prince Eiji, and Extra Elusive. The other 5/2 stateside co-favorite Fox Tal seemed to struggle with the give in the ground and could do no better than sixth.
Mountain Hunter, Walkinthesand, King Ottokar, Forest Ranger, Cockalorum, Dream Castle, and Crossed Baton completed the order of finish. Aloe Vera, Bubble And Squeak, and Dubai Warrior were non-runners.
A canny ride from @the_doyler as Mountain Angel sneaks up the rail to win the Wolferton Stakes 👀A third winner of the week for the jockey and a second for trainer Roger Varian #RoyalAscot pic.twitter.com/8RLAhRP4ZX— Ascot Racecourse (@Ascot) June 18, 2020
A canny ride from @the_doyler as Mountain Angel sneaks up the rail to win the Wolferton Stakes 👀A third winner of the week for the jockey and a second for trainer Roger Varian #RoyalAscot pic.twitter.com/8RLAhRP4ZX
Mountain Angel’s win improved his overall record to 23-5-9-2. The 6-year-old Dark Angel gelding won two straight leading into last year’s Wolferton, where he finished fifth after a troubled trip.
“Mountain Angel had everything in his favor,” Varian said. “He is a good horse fresh – he has shown that over the years. He gets the trip well, loves a bit of dig in the ground, and trained well at home.
Mountain Angel brought back $15.40 to win and $5 to place, Sir Dragonet brought back $3.20 to place, and Regal Reality paid $3.80 to place.
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