International superstar Highland Reel (4c Galileo-Hveger, by Danehill) emulated his sire Galileo by winning the G1 King George VI & Queen Elizabeth Stakes on Saturday.
Ryan Moore was always in front aboard the globetrotting four-year-old and the pair came home comfortably clear to land the famous prize in front of a bumper Ascot crowd.
Highland Reel won last season’s G1 Secretariat Stakes in Chicago and the G1 Hong Kong Mile at Sha Tin as well as finishing third in the G1 Cox Plate in Australia.
“He’s an incredible horse,” said winning trainer Aidan O’Brien. “As everyone knows he travels the world and loves travelling. He’s getting better, which is amazing. Physically the development is plain to see and mentally he’s a rock. Obviously he could go to any of the places now – he could do Australia, Japan and Hong Kong and he could go for the Breeders’ Cup Turf.
“Seamus (Heffernan) has been delighted with him at home and the horse has been progressing all the time. We couldn’t be happier with him and Ryan gave him a beautiful ride today.”
Moore added: “He’s a very good horse – he’s won in America, he’s won in Hong Kong and had a tough start to this year, beginning in Dubai. He’s had a tough campaign but he thrives on it. He’s just very professional. He is slightly underrated because he won in Hong Kong and beat a very good horse that day.
“He made it easy for me. He was very comfortable and when he felt Wings of Desire come to him and I got stuck into him he found plenty.”