Hymn nabs thrilling Ormonde

Frankie Dettori drove the John Gosden-trained Western Hymn to a narrow success in the Group 3 Boodles Diamond Ormonde Stakes

This year’s renewal of the Group 3 Ormonde Stakes, named after the 19th century triple crown winner, fell to the John Gosden team as Western Hymn prevailed in the tightest of finishes.

Gosden landed the Ormonde Stakes for the first time

Wearing cheekpieces for the first time, the son of High Chapparal took a position on the rail under Frankie Dettori tracking the leaders in the early stages.

Godolphin’s all-weather marathon scorer Winning Story led the nine-strong field with Ballydoyle’s US Army Ranger close up in second.

As the field turned into the straight, US Army Ranger got by the leader and struck for home. All the while Dettori switched to the outer under an awkward looking Western Hymn but made good progress.

Gosden’s charge bore down on last year’s Derby runner-up and got there right on the post to win by a short-head.

“He’s a very difficult horse, you can’t get there too early,” reflected Dettori.

“I got there as late as I dared and he still stopped but the line was in time for me.

“I’m pleased for the horse he’s quirky but he’s part of the furniture in the stable we all love him and he deserves a race like this.”

Having his first start of the season, the six-year-old adds to his clutch of Group 3 wins, the rest of which were all achieved at Sandown Park.

His Newmarket handler etches his name onto the one mile and five furlong contest for the first time, in a race which has been dominated by Sir Michael Stoute and Aidan O’Brien over the last decade.

He’s part of the furniture in the stable

Earlier in the afternoon, leading Derby hope Cliffs Of Moher proved just too strong in the Listed Homeserve Dee Stakes.

Well-regarded after an emphatic maiden win at Leopardstown in October, the son of Galileo raced prominently under Ryan Moore.

Driven to the lead inside the final furlong, he found enough in the run to the line to register his second victory by a length and a half.

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