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  • 14:30 Jersey Stakes 7f

  • (group 3) £80,000 added 3yo 16 ran
  • Winner: £
  • Going: Good to Firm
  • Surface: Turf
    Weighed In
  • Winning time: 1m 27.65s
  • Off time: 14:34:14

Jersey Joy For Hamdan Team

By Martin Kelly and Tom Peacock, PA Sport.   Last Updated: 17/06/09 3:11pm

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Ouqba overhauls Deposer.

Ouqba overhauls Deposer.

Jockey Tadhg O'Shea bagged his first Royal Ascot winner as Ouqba swooped late and fast in the Jersey Stakes, the opening event on day two of the five-day extravaganza.

Owned by Sheikh Hamdan Al Maktoum, who was securing back-to-back victories following Aqlaam's success 12 months ago, Ouqba was rejected by retained rider Richard Hills in favour of favourite Infiraad, like the winner also trained by his father Barry Hills.

However, he called it wrong as the market leader trailed home while Ouqba (12-1) came with a powerful late surge to edge out Deposer by half a length.

Ashram was three and a quarter lengths back in third for the Godolphin operation.

Robert Winston set out to make all on John Best's 16-1 chance Deposer, who showed plenty of speed on the stands rail.

He found more when the challengers came thick and fast and looked at one stage as though he might be good enough.

But Ouqba was the one out of the pack who produced that bit extra in the last 100 yards to win in Sheikh Hamdan's second colours.

The winning trainer's son and assistant Charlie Hills said: "We were delighted with his work leading up to the Free Handicap.

"Obviously he won very convincingly there but the 2000 Guineas came too quick for him.

"He didn't run a bad race, he just ran a bit flat and we'd beaten delighted with him before this race.

"The other horse had been working well too which was why Richard chose him and he was a progressive horse. Ouqba is very tough and genuine.

"He has raced quite lazily today, but he's knuckled down well and showed a good turn of foot in his races before and we were delighted with him today.

"Obviously there's the Foret later in the season but we will keep him to seven furlongs and look at something like the Lennox Stakes for him."

The victory will have provided Hills senior, who is currently in hospital, with a tonic.

Hills added: "Dad will be watching from his bed. He's doing much better now and hopes to be out by the end of the week."

O'Shea added: "This is the first of many Royal Ascot winners for me, hopefully.

"He's a lovely horse and a pleasure to ride. He was spot on for today, he is a very tough horse and he deserved that.

"It's always nice to pick up spare rides but for Richard it was a hard situation. Infiraad has been nothing but impressive on the track and at home this year.

"My fellow was a little bit underrated, but it's fortunate it's worked out for me."

Best expects Deposer to change hands after his creditable second.

He said: "The plan wasn't to lead like he did but Robert said he hit the gate so fast that he didn't want to interfere with the horse.

"He's run an absolute stormer under a great ride to be beaten by a better horse on the day.

"He'll probably be sold now."

Simon Crisford, Godolphin's racing manager, said of Ashram: "The visor for the first time suited him well."

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