Russian Emperor Strikes Late In Hampton Court Stakes
Russian Emperor (3c Galileo - Atlantic Jewel, by Fastnet Rock) was bred to be special and proved himself so when staying on strongly to win the Group 3 Hampton Court Stakes at Royal Ascot.
The Aidan O’Brien-trained colt was bred by Laurie Macri and Coolmore partners out of top-class Australian racemare Atlantic Jewel (Fastnet Rock) who is currently in foal to Triple Crown winner Justify. A close second to stablemate Cormorant in the Derby Trial earlier in the month, the manner of Russian Emperor's late challenge at the Royal meeting supported his chances over further at Epsom.
After guiding Russian Emperor to defeat the favourite First Receiver by half a length, Ryan Moore said, “Russian Emperor is a really nice colt and he's got a lovely attitude. He was very professional today and he showed a good attitude, I think ten furlongs is fine but he may get further. I think he'll be a nice horse for the rest of the year. Whether he runs in the Derby will be decided, but he's given himself a chance.”
Russian Emperor’s success in a thrilling finish was reminiscent of stablemate Circus Maximus’s nail-biting win in the Group 1 Queen Anne Stakes a day earlier. As well as training his second Royal Ascot winner of the week, Aidan O’Brien also unleashed an exciting newcomer at Gowran Park on Wednesday.
Laburnum (3f Galileo - Secret Garden, by Danehill), a full-sister to Guineas victor Roderic O’Connor (Galileo), beat hot favourite Thunder Kiss by a length and three quarters to win the Irish EBF Fillies Maiden. The Swettenham Stud-bred blueblood holds entries in the Irish Oaks and Group 1 Pretty Polly Stakes.