August Festival voted a Goodwood hit after three days of sunshine and top-class racing

Rossa Ryan gets up on Duke of Hazzard to win the Celebration Mile / Picture by Malcolm Wells
Rossa Ryan gets up on Duke of Hazzard to win the Celebration Mile / Picture by Malcolm Wells

From the sensational fireworks display to superb performances one track, the August Bank Holiday fixture at Goodwood Racecourse was declared a major success in glorious sunshine.

On Friday evening, Volkan Star was a sensational winner of The European Breeders Fund EBF Novice Stakes, trouncing his rivals by an impressive six lengths, to justify the £1m price tag paid by Godolphin, for Charlie Appleby and William Buick.

Green Power showed his liking for the Sussex track once again by winning the feature Levin Down Handicap proving that victory at the Qatar Goodwood Festival in the Chelsea Barracks Handicap was no fluke.

After racing, the popular Batala drummers set a hypnotic beat, drawing crowds from around the stands before fireworks lit up the night sky. There was rapturous applause and cheers after the finale.

On Saturday, Duke Of Hazzard got the better of Turgenev in the Group 2 Ladbrokes Celebration Mile, heralding jockey, Rossa Ryan’s biggest career win to date. The three-year-old now has a Group 1 entry in the Prix du Moulin at Longchamp.

Ryan, 19, who is in his first year after riding out his claim, commented: “I didn’t sleep well last night and spent a lot of time on my tablet, working out what might happen and how the race would go.

“Blinkers have brought out a big improvement in him, and he loves it round here. Paul Cole (trainer) has been very kind to me and I am grateful to him and Mrs. Fitri Hay for putting me up.”

Richard Kingscote rode a tactical race on Boomer who stuck her neck out to repel the late challenge of Dark Lady in the Group 3 Ladbrokes Prestige Stakes, before a small but select field contested the Group 3 Ladbrokes March Stakes. Run in memory of local trainer John Dunlop, it was Sir Ron Priestley who obliged becoming the third Qatar Goodwood Festival winner to follow up with a win at the meeting.

Having been headed by the strong travelling Promissory, he won convincingly, under a confident ride from Franny Norton. John Dunlop’s wife Sue was on hand to present the trophy for the race to trainer, Deirdre Johnston, and owner Mr. Paul Dean.

On Sunday, the hot weather continued to grace the Sussex Downs with Oisin Murphy enjoying a good day with two winners. The first came aboard Queen’s Soldier in The Chichester City Selling Stakes, before Le Don De Vie followed up in The Ladbrokes Handicap Stakes.

Suedois rallied gamely under Danny Tudhope as Momkin challenged late in the Group 3 Weatherbys Racing Bank Supreme Stakes; the ultra-consistent eight-year-old holds an entry at Irish Champions Weekend. Red Stripes made the long trip from Cheshire worthwhile for Lisa Williamson by winning The Ladbrokes Download The App Handicap Stakes, before Blue Medici won the final race of the weekend, the Silk Series Lady Riders Handicap, for Becky Smith.

Throughout the meeting, racegoers enjoyed the blissful weather, plus family fun including live music, a traditional fairground, donkey rides, Punch and Judy shows and a petting zoo.

The racecourse is now looking forward to two midweek fixtures in September (3 & 11), before the season comes to a close on October 13 with the Harvest, Hops and Horseracing fixture. For more information and to purchase tickets, please visit