Point Lonsdale came out on top in a thrilling renewal of the Chesham Stakes to deny Queen Elizabeth a famous winner on her visit to Royal Ascot.
Aidan O’Brien and Ryan Moore had only tasted success once this week, with Love in the Prince of Wales’s Stakes – but their supporters latched on to this once-raced Australia colt.
Sent off the well-backed 10/11 favourite, he was given a real race of it by Frankie Dettori on the John and Thady Gosden-trained Reach For The Moon.
Understandably in the conditions, it was only a steady pace set by Sweeping, who was still in front of the main group entering the final furlong while Reach For The Moon led Masekela on the far side.
Point Lonsdale then came through to challenge and with Reach For The Moon pulled clear, with the latter drifting right and the favourite going off to his left.
It did not stop him going forwards, however, and he won by half a length. Great Max caught Sweeping for third.
Point Lonsdale is a half-brother to his talented stable companion Broome.
O'Brien said: “We’re delighted with him – we knew the race was set up very well for him and we’re absolutely delighted.
“[Our horses] have been running well and been getting placed, but we’re very happy to have the winner now.
“We always felt like he was a good ground horse – it rained heavily and was very tricky.
“He would have learned a lot today, but we’re glad he handled it as well as he did. He’s a very good mover and there’s no doubt good ground is better for him.
“He’s slick and he’s got good pedigree with his brother. He was showing a lot and was working like a very good colt – and always has from a very early stage.”
Point Lonsdale’s half-a-length triumph in just his second outing immediately marked him out as a 2022 classic contender as he followed in Churchill’s Chesham Stakes footsteps.
Reach For The Moon had looked poised to give The Queen an Ascot Saturday to savour but Moore had enough in the tank to hit the accelerator and edge over the line.
O’Brien has previously won the Chesham Stakes with Bach (1999), Maybe (2011), Churchill (2016), September (2017) and Battleground.