Golden Win For Soldier

Soldier's Tale foiled an antipodean sprint whitewash and gave trainer Jeremy Noseda the proudest moment in his training career when producing a power-packed display in the Golden Jubilee Stakes at Royal Ascot.

Soldier's Tale foiled an antipodean sprint whitewash and gave trainer Jeremy Noseda the proudest moment in his training career when producing a power-packed display in the Golden Jubilee Stakes at Royal Ascot.

The injury-plagued six-year-old nailed Australia's Takeover Target by a head in the Group One sprint to deny the raiders from Down Under a double following Miss Andretti's success in the King's Stand Stakes on Tuesday.

Johnny Murtagh's mount responded well to a first-time visor and raced up from mid-division to stay on grimly and grab the glory.

Takeover Target, who had finished fourth in the King's Stand, was prominent throughout and gamely repelled all-comers until being swallowed up by Soldier's Tale.

Noseda was ecstatic afterwards, and many of those who packed into the final day of the meeting would have been delighted too, with the winner having been backed from 20-1 down to 9-1 at the off.

And for Noseda the win was a very personal moment in his career with the horse he calls 'spam' - due to his out-hanging tongue - having come within minutes of death on two occasions.

The Newmarket-based trainer said: "I think it might be my best day. It is a very special day in my life and I see this horse as a special friend; I just adore him.

"He's been a horse with countless problems and we've got him back for this. He's such a tough horse and a brave horse. He deserves it.

"His owner Sid Belzberg lives in Canada and he deserves this for his patience and I should

give a huge 'thank you' to the whole team at home for getting him back to win this. It's a fabulous, fabulous day.

"He's had countless fractures, colic surgery and pieces of his stomach removed. He has to have a special diet as he finds it hard to digest.

"We live in fear all the time of him getting colic again, but he's such a special horse. He's a fighter as he's been at the point of having to be put down twice.

"He's my favourite horse in the yard and I love him to bits. I love him for his heart, and 99 horses out of 100 would have given up with all the problems he's had, but he has a will to live and a will to win.

"For this horse six furlongs is his bare minimum, but the more rain we had the bigger a stamina test it was and the more it suited him.

"We have beaten the best Australian sprinters with a horse

who isn't really a sprinter, and we can put the talk of the Australian horses to bed now."

A delighted Murtagh added: "It was very tight, but it was a great race.

"I got a lovely run through the race but when Takeover Target started to quicken up around two-out I thought he'd go and win the race.

"But my fellow put his head down and responded really well and just in the last 50 yards we were getting there with every stride."

There was a sting in the tail for Murtagh, however, as he was hit with a six-day ban for using his whip with excessive frequency. He will be out of action on July 4-9 inclusive as a result.

The gallant Takeover Target was third in this race 12 months ago having won the King's Stand and his trainer Joe Janiak said of the eight-year-old: "I

thought it was his race two strides from home.

"We were considering the July Cup and Nunthorpe but there are a lot of miles on the clock and I don't want to push him, so we'll take him home and try and find a race for him at the Spring Carnival."

Richard Hannon was responsible for third-placed Asset, and his son Richard junior said: "He travelled so well and he is a top, top sprinter."

Miss Andretti had been all the rage during the week but drifted to 2-1 on course following heavy showers and she weakened into 15th place.

Her trainer Lee Freedman said: "We don't want to make any excuses. She came off the bridle far too early, which was probably down to the ground.

"We are counting the week as a big success. The fact we did not get everything our own way today is neither here nor there."

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