Day three double sees Sea The Stars storm to head of Royal Ascot standings
Perennial champion sire Galileo just one winner behind his half-brother
Sea The Stars surged to the head of the 2019 Royal Ascot sire standings by virtue of a stunning double on Thursday, following on from Crystal Ocean's Group 1 breakthrough in the Prince of Wales's Stakes on Wednesday.
Star Catcher, homebred by Anthony Oppenheimer's Hascombe And Valiant Studs, initiated Thursday's brace by scoring decisively in the Group 2 Ribblesdale Stakes. The three-year-old filly was making her Pattern race breakthrough, and is one of 33 Group-race winners on Sea The Stars' stallion record.
Star Catcher is very much on the up but the second leg of Sea The Stars' double was completed when Stradivarius, already an established top-flight performer, retained his crown in the Gold Cup.
Sea The Stars, a resident at the Aga Khan's Gilltown Stud, also supplied the third home, Eminence, in the day's closing race, the King George V Stakes.
Galileo still has some big guns to fire at the meeting, with the likes of Japan and Hermosa due to line up later in the week, and the perennial champion sire has built up a strong supporting cast should matters be decided by countback, with four runners-up and two thirds to his name.
Kingman got his name on the scoresheet and nosed his way into third place, as Sangarius led home a one-two for Juddmonte's rising star in the Hampton Court Stakes, with Fox Chairman two and a quarter lengths away in second. The Banstead Manor Stud resident was also responsible for King Of Comedy, who chased Circus Maximus home earlier in the week.
Farhh, who struck with Move Swiftly on Wednesday, edged ahead of Frankel into fourth place when Dee Ex Bee stuck on gamely to finish second to Stradivarius in the Gold Cup.
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