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Silvestre De Sousa - jockey

Silvestre De Sousa: rode his first Griup 1 winner for Godolphin 

  PICTURE: Mark Cranham (  

De Sousa gets first Godolphin Group 1 win

Report: Italy, Sunday
Premio Roma GBI Racing (Group 1) 1m2f, turf, 3yo+

SILVESTRE DE SOUSA rode his first Group 1 winner for Godolphin when Hunter's Light proved too good for the opposition in breaking his own duck at the highest level - despite hanging from the inside to the stands' rail.

It is expected that the Saeed Bin Suroor-trained colt will now be aimed at Hong Kong's valuable International meeting on December 9.

Hunter's Light started his wayward path to glory about 300 yards from home when he edged left but De Sousa quickly straightened him up. However, approaching the final furlong the colt went all the way to the stands' rail, despite De Sousa trying to correct the situation with the whip in his left hand.

Once on the rail, Hunter's Light galloped strongly to the line and was simply a cut above the opposition, led by Derby Italiano winner Feuerblitz. The margin was two lengths but De Sousa, appointed as retained rider by Godolphin at the start of the year, had eased down Hunter's Light before the line.

The winning jockey said: "It is big moment for me to win my first Group 1 for Godolphin and I'm delighted they gave me the opportunity to ride the horse.

"He was going to win easily, but then he started hanging across the track for no reason and I had to give him a couple of smacks to get going, but I was always holding on and he won by a length I would say."

Looking to the future, he added: "This win will give me plenty of confidence and hopefully it should set me up for what I hope will be a good winter."

Diana Cooper, representing the winning owners, said on  "That was a very good performance from Hunter's Light. He just idled a bit out in front but has still won convincingly. The horse has improved throughout the season and this was a deserved Group 1 success for him. It was also marvellous to see Silvestre record a first Group 1 victory.

"There is a possibility Hunter's Light could go to Hong Kong next month for the international meeting at Sha Tin and he will remain in training next year."


Also on Sunday

Capannelle: Criterium Femminile (Listed) 7f 110yds, turf, 2yo fillies.

The Charles O'Brien-trained Lottie Dod could finish only fourth in her second successive Sunday start in Rome, losing out in a three-way photo for second having made the running.

She was headed entering the final quarter-mile and rather than folding tamely, kept on well throughout the final furlong, finishing about four lengths off the winner, Grand Treasure (Giovanni Colella/Olivier Peslier) - replicating almost to the pound their placings against each other seven days ago.


Capannelle: Premio Ribot (Group 2) 1m, turf, 3yo+.

King Air (Rupert Pritchard-Gordon/Stephane Pasquier) put this supposedly competitive contest to bed when he forged clear over 300 yards from home.

He was punched home in the final furlong but nothing got near enough to challenge, passing the post two lengths clear of Saint Bernard, with Douce Vie three-quarters of a length back in third.

King Air was adding a first Group race victory to his profile.

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