Hong Kong star Cape of Good Hope set a course record at York Saturday when capturing the Golden Jubilee Stakes (Eng-I) in a surprise on the final day of the Royal Ascot meeting.
Mick Kinane, who won his fifth race in the five-day meet, rode the 7-year-old gelding to victory, completing the six-furlong distance in 1:08.58 on a track rated good to firm in places. The son of Inchinor bettered the previous mark by 0.24 of a second.
The winner reached even terms with pacesetting Galeota 100 yards from the finish and prevailed by a head. Balmont, the 9-2 favorite, finished third, 1 1/2 lengths behind the first two, with Royal Millennium fourth. American challenger Mighty Beau, saddled by Jeff Mullins, came home 11th in the 15-horse field.
Cape of Good Hope, who is trained by David Oughton, ran fourth in the King's Stand Stakes (Eng-II) on Tuesday. The victory widened the gelding's lead in the Global Sprint Challenge.
Saturday, Kinane kept him in touch with leaders while third, asking Cape of Good Hope to pick it up with a furlong left. Galeota was determined on the lead but could not quite hold off the challenger.
Kinane, who was set to ride Somnus until that one withdrew late, told PA Sport
, "I knew he'd come on for the run on Tuesday, but I have committed to Tim Easterby's horse for the season. But when Tim took his horse out, David let me back on him. It turned into a bit of battle in the last 100 yards, but I just got there.
"He's a top-class sprinter. I rode him in the first leg of the Global Sprint Challenge in Australia when he was third, but I couldn't make it when he won his Group I there last time."
The English-born Oughton, who saddled the first Hong Kong winner in Britain, noted, "He's been all over the world – to Australia, Japan and England twice – and he's just a really tough horse.
"I wouldn't make a habit of running him twice in a week. He's now done it twice at Ascot, but normally in Hong Kong he would have six weeks between races."
Var (5), Byron (6), Etlaala (7), The Tatling (8), Quito (9), Keeneland Swan (10), Mighty Beau (11), Orientor (12), The Kiddykid (13), Captain Hurricane (14) and Antonius Pius (15) rounded out the order of finish.
Mighty Beau was prominent early while racing alone on the far side for three furlongs, came under a ride with a quarter of a mile left and finished one-paced.
Royal Ascot was held in York this year while the traditional Berkshire course is remodeled. More than 220,000 spectators attended the five-day event.