Rio de La Plata Rolls to Vintage Victory

Godolphin unveiled a new 2-year-old star at Glorious Goodwood as Rio de La Plata drew off to an easy two-length victory in the Veuve Clicquot Vintage Stakes (Eng-II) on Wednesday.

A five-length winner of a maiden race his last time out, Rio de La Plata was made the heavy favorite for this group II event, which has been won in recent years by Vodafone Derby (Eng-I) hero Sir Percy and Godolphin's Prix du Jockey Club (Fr-I) victor, Shamardal.

Rio de La Plata faced some formidable opposition in the Vintage, most notably in the form of Aidan O'Brien's Lizard Island.  The bay son of Danehill Dancer entered the Goodwood contest off of a victory in the Anheuser-Busch Adventure Parks Railway Stakes (Ire-II) at The Curragh on July 1.

What appeared to be a tough contest on paper never really came to pass, however, as Frankie Dettori and Rio de La Plata surged to the lead two furlongs out and never looked back, drawing off for an easy win.

Lizard Island rumbled up for second, finishing four lengths in front of Donegal.

Final time for the seven furlongs was 1:26.05 over the good turf.

Godolphin certainly has high hopes for this chestnut son of Rahy.  Simon Crisford, Godolphin's racing manager told reporters after the race, “We would have been disappointed if he had not won.”

Crisford continued, “We will look at all the autumn group I's, but he will probably go straight for the Dewhurst (Eng-I).  There is also the National Stakes (Ire-I) in Ireland and a race on Arc Day, but if it all goes according to plan, he could end up in the Breeders' Cup Juvenile Turf at Monmouth Park.”

Rio de La Plata is out of the Ahmad mare, Express Way.  He a three-parts brother to Argentine group I winner, El Expresivo (by Candy Stripes).  He is also a half-brother to group II-placed Epsilon and to two other winners in Argentina.  He was bred in Kentucky by a partnership.

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