Inver Park gives Boughey first Royal Ascot winner with Buckingham Palace victory
Inver Park continued an excellent year for George Boughey’s Newmarket team when landing the Buckingham Palace Handicap, providing his trainer with a first Royal Ascot victory.
The action unfolded towards the far side of the track and 12/1 chance Inver Park, who came out of stall 2, was smuggled into the race by Ben Curtis. Inver Park’s challenge was timed to perfection and, having hit the front well inside the final furlong, he saw his race out well to hold off runner-up Ropey Guest (40/1) by a length. Rhoscolyn (33/1) was a short-head further back in third while Chiefofchiefs (16/1) came from the back of the field to grab fourth.
It has been a season to remember for Boughey, who landed his first Classic with Cachet in the QIPCO 1,000 Guineas. The daughter of Aclaim lines up in tomorrow’s G1 Coronation Stakes.
Boughey said: “It’s been good! Inver Park is a horse who we thought had a little bit left in him, and the ground was a big question mark – it’s very fast out there, and he showed his guts there to dig deep late on. He’s by Pivotal and we always thought he was a soft ground horse.
“We are very pleased to have a winner here and it just reflects what we’re doing at home. I’m very lucky to stand here and pick up the trophy. It is very hard to win here – I think we had 12 or 14 horses to run here this week, and they’ve all run with credit to a certain extent, but it’s a long way from running with credit to winning. It was a huge moment, and great for Ben Curtis to ride it, too. I think he’s ridden 14 winners for us already this year and he’s a huge part of the team. It is a very special day.
“Inver Park is not a horse who does a huge amount of work at home. Sam Haggas, who bought him and who I work very closely with – a huge mention must go to him. This was actually the race we bought him with in mind back last year when he was a colt. We were well-advised; he was trained by Mick Quinn, and Ryan King, who works for me, used to ride him there and said, ‘you’ve got to buy him’. There are a lot of people to thank, and two long-term plans have come off in the last couple of weeks. It is very special.
“Cachet is in super shape. I could not be happier with her and I think she’s training better than ever. Her work has been very good; she worked on fast ground once in between twice on slower ground, and I think it was pretty apparent that her work on fast ground was better, and they might have to catch her tomorrow. These races are all the same; they are all massive races and we take them as they come. Roll on tomorrow. We’ve got a couple of nice horses on Saturday as well in Missed The Cut and Tollard Royal.”
6.10pm Buckingham Palace Handicap
1 Inver Park (The Inver Park Partnership) George Boughey 4-9-01 Ben Curtis 12/1
2 Ropey Guest (John Guest Racing) George Margarson 5-8-13 Tom Queally 40/1
3 Rhoscolyn (The Horse Watchers) David O’Meara 4-9-10 Danny Tudhope 33/1
4 Chiefofchiefs (Mervyn Ayers) Charlie Fellowes 9-9-03 Jamie Spencer 16/1
29 ran 5/2 fav Montassib (5th)
George Boughey – 1st Royal Ascot winner
Ben Curtis – 2nd Royal Ascot winner