Racing: Ruby is Nassau jewel for Cole

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The Independent Online
THE FEATURE of this year's Glorious Goodwood has been the tightness of the finishes in the main races. Yesterday's Group Two Nassau Stakes proved no exception.

All At Sea, whose stamina let her down when beaten by User Friendly in the Oaks, was made an odds-on favourite as she was dropping back in distance.

Held up in the early stages, she appeared to be travelling well enough when Richard Quinn sent last year's winner Ruby Tiger to the front entering the home straight. With two furlongs to run Pat Eddery sent her in pursuit of the leader, but in spite of a determined challenge she never looked likely to peg back Ruby Tiger, who put up a tremendously game performance to hold on by a neck.

Paul Cole's five-year-old mare is a fine advertisement to the benefits of keeping a good horse in training. She has now won seven pattern races in five different countries, and collected nearly pounds 500,000 in prize money.

Her options now include the International Stakes at York's Ebor meeting, but the Beverley D at Arlington, Chicago on 3 September is a more likely target, followed by the Prix de l'Opera at Longchamp on 4 October.

This may be her last season, however, according to part-owner Philip Blacker, who said: 'She will probably retire at the end of the year and if she keeps on winning we will keep her for breeding. She could even visit Generous.'

While racegoers in Britain may not be able to watch Ruby Tiger in the flesh again, they are sure to see more of another of Flat racing's 'veterans' in Knock Knock.

Ian Balding's gelding seems to be reaching his prime at the age of seven. He followed up last week's Ascot win with his most valuable success to date in the Chesterfield Cup, getting up in the final stride under a brilliantly-timed ride by Ray Cochrane to beat Pharly Story.

The finish of the opening race caused stunned applause from the crowd rather than the roar which accompanies a tight finish, as Mohammed Moubarak's debutant Forest Wind turned the race into a procession in the final two furlongs, finishing 10 lengths clear of his nearest pursuer.

He inevitably received a quote from the bookmakers for the Two Thousand Guineas. This time it was Coral, who offer a fair 33-1, but after the embarrassment caused by the failure of stablemate Forest Tiger, connections were not making any rash predictions.

Judged by the style of yesterday's victory, they may really have something to get excited about.

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