Society Rock rolls to an upset in the Golden Jubilee Stakes. 
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Society Rock rolls to an upset in the Golden Jubilee Stakes.
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Trevor Jones

'Society' Rocks Golden Jubilee Field at 25-1

Last year's runner-up wins with a late surge to highlight closing day at Royal Ascot.

Society Rock, who had to settle for second in last year's Golden Jubilee Stakes (Eng-I) behind Starspangledbanner, went one better this time around as he came with a late surge to capture the $646,056 event at Royal Ascot June 18.

The Golden Jubilee, the highlight of the closing day card at Royal Ascot, was also the fifth leg in the Global Sprint Challenge, a nine-race series of lucrative turf sprint races staged worldwide.

Society Rock, a 4-year-old son of Rock of Gibraltar, was dismissed at odds of 25-1 by the betting public, who sent the filly Bewitched off as the 3-1 favorite in the field of 16. Pre-race favorite Delegator was scratched the morning of the race due to the soft course conditions.

Jockey Pat Cosgrave rode a patient race aboard Society Rock, settling the colt toward the rear of the field as Definightly took the lead at the break. The field quickly split into two separate groups, with Definightly leading a smaller group of five that took up the running along the stands’ side rail. The bulk of the runners, which included Society Rock, raced in a pack along the far side rail.

As the field entered the final furlong it was Aussie raider Star Witness who poked his head in front, as jockey Steve Arnold sought to improve off of his second-place finish in the King’s Stand Stakes (Eng-I) June 14. The chestnut colt edged into a slight lead, and it appeared that he might become the second straight Australian-based horse to capture the race.

With just 75 yards remaining, though, Society Rock produced an electric turn of foot, splitting between horses and shooting to the front within the shadow of the wire. Society Rock hit the wire a half-length in front of Monsieur Chevalier, who had passed a tiring Star Witness to take the place spot. Star Witness held on for third, another 1 1/4 lengths further back.

Final time for the six furlongs over the soft going was 1:17.22.

James Fanshawe, who trains Society Rock for owner Simon Gibson, told reporters after the race, “I’m absolutely thrilled with the horse. He was slightly forgotten last year when second and was never quite right afterwards. He’s taken his time this spring, but his last two bits of work have been good.”

It was the fourth win in 11 career starts for Society Rock, who was bred in Ireland by San Gabriel Investments. He is the second foal out of the Key of Luck mare High Society, who captured the listed La Habra Stakes at Santa Anita in 2002.