Blackcastle Sport’s own, Thore Hammer-Hansen, stormed to a brilliant victory yesterday, at Royal Ascot.
Coeur De Lion lunged late to land the Ascot Stakes for trainer Alan King and jockey, Hammer Hansen, in tremendous style.
Plenty of the runners had pushed enough entering the latter stages of the two-and-a-half-mile handicap, and it briefly looked like Nicky Henderson’s Verdana Blue would deliver for favourite-backers in the final furlong.
However, 16-1 shot Coeur De Lion could be spotted making late progress and got up to the front-runners in the dying strides.
Hammer-Hansen, 20, said: “Obviously it’s unbelievable to come here and ride a Royal Ascot winner. It’s sad there are no crowds around, but you still get an incredible buzz out of it. There are so many Group One-winning jockeys who haven’t had a Royal Ascot winner yet.”
“I won on Coeur De Lion last year at Chester and he has taken me to some very big places, including here. He finished fifth here last year.”
“I went into Alan King’s last week and he said I could ride him. We were quite confident he would run a big race today, but to think he would go out and win was only a dream.”