Naval Crown and jockey James Doyle put in a superb performance on day five at Royal Ascot to claim an impressive victory in the Platinum Jubilee Stakes.
Naval Crown edged out stablemate Creative Force in a thrilling finish to the £1million Platinum Jubilee Stakes.
In a reversal of last year’s Jersey Stakes standings, it was the 33-1 shot that was leading this time. A length and a quarter separated them on this occasion, but it was a much shorter margin in Saturday’s Group 1.
The duo, both coached by Charlie Appleby, passed the post together and a photo-finish was called before the winner was announced. Ridden by James Doyle, Naval Crown raced along the grandstand rail, while his stable mate was on the other side of the track.
The 5-2 favorite Home Affairs, chasing a brace for Australian manager Chris Waller after the heroic exploits of Nature Strip earlier in the week, could only finish in 20th place.
Appleby said: “There wasn’t much between them at home. Will rode the winner at a canter the other day and said there wasn’t much between them.
“Both were in great shape, but Naval Crown is still learning about the sprint division and he was all at sea in Arabia. But he finished fourth in the Guineas and is a rock solid horse, and on those six furlongs stiff, we saw his natural rhythm.”
Naval Crown’s top-flight display was another feather in the hat for Doyle, enjoying a memorable flat season.
Just a month ago he celebrated his first British Classic Coroebus win at the 2,000 Guineas.
“He was the seven-stadia favorite in Saudi Arabia and ran away with me,” Doyle said.
“We were hoping to come back on the trip.”
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Earlier in the card, Ryan Moore, crowned leader of the meeting for the ninth time, won the Hardwicke Stakes on Broome (6-1).
The top jockey then overtook Rohaan (18-1) for back-to-back triumphs at Wokingham.
Appleby also had two winners, with Naval Crown adding to Noble Truth’s exploits in the Jersey Stakes.