Godolphin sprinter Trekking produced a late charge to pip hometown favourite Gytrash and clinch The Goodwood at Morphettville in Adelaide on Saturday.
Trained by James Cummings and ridden by the Melbourne-based Irish rider John Allen, the five-year-old Street Cry gelding won by a short head to give the royal blues to their racing’s top prize tally to four for the year worldwide.
Godolphin filly Lyre finished third in the field of 14 runners over the 1,200-metre distance in the Grade 1 race.
“He’s a class horse and he needed to show it today,” Cummings said of Trekking to godolphin.com.
“We’ve seen some good performances in the Godolphin colours today; the wind is in our sails.”
The trainer completed a treble on the day with Katter and Ranier successful at Kembla Grange and Rosehill, respectively, taking Godolphin’s tally to 211 worldwide for the year.
“It was my first time riding him and when I got out to the mounting yard, I was surprised how small he was,” Allen said after landing his 10th racing’s top prize in his career.
“He was tough and he had a super run but the runner-up [Gytrash] gave a really good kick.
“I thought when I got out that we were going to catch him but he [Gytrash] kept kicking. To my lad’s credit, he really fought and kept kicking to the line.”
Meanwhile, Godolphin’s European team is all set to begin their British campaign when it resumes after the Coronavirus outbreak from June 1 at all-weather Newcastle.
A busy card is set to follow. It includes the Coronation Cup at Newmarket on June 5 along with the Brigadier Gerard, Paradise and Abernant Stakes supporting the Group 1 event, moved from Epsom.
Lingfield hosts a stellar card also on June 5, featuring their Oaks and Derby trials. The 2,000 Guineas is slated for June 6 and the 1,000 Guineas on the following day.
Hugh Anderson, managing director of Godolphin UK and Dubai, was naturally delighted about the season getting underway in Europe, with France resuming their season last Monday.
“In the UK and Dubai, Godolphin has continued to operate to best effect under the significant restrictions imposed by the Covid-19 pandemic,” Anderson told the Godolphin website.
“For our riders and stable staff, social distancing and sensible precautions have allowed them to train horses as much as normal and I am full of admiration for them and the trainers for their incredible patience and hard work under difficult circumstances.
“Saeed [bin Suroor] and Charlie [Appleby] have a lot of talent to work with and I know are ready whenever we get the green light.
“On the studs, the covering season is running very smoothly and the majority of our 2020 foals have now been safely delivered.
Anderson acknowledged they have already missed some key events such as the Dubai World Cup and the pandemic will continue to affect them for months to come.
“All we can do is follow government advice and keep going. Godolphin prides itself on always looking forward – we have fantastic staff and fantastic horses and every reason to be extremely positive about the season ahead,” he said.