Kemari gathers in the Queen’s Vase.
On only his third career appearance, Charlie Appleby’s Kemari defied his inexperience to win the Group Two Queen’s Vase at Royal Ascot.
For the second year on a row, William Buick kept Kemari close to the pace, slightly behind the leaders, before challenging early in the straight and sprinting for the finish.
It was the right decision, as the Dubawi gelding stormed to the lead and then had plenty in hand in the final furlong to comfortably hold off the late onslaught of Aidan O’Brien’s favorite Wordsworth.
Wordsworth stayed on fiercely after being unable to locate a change of gear when it counted most, and Stowell finished another length and a quarter back in third.
Kemari, who made his debut just over a month ago when second at Newmarket before winning a Yarmouth maiden, certainly enjoyed the step up in travel as he gave Godolphin trainer Appleby his first winner of this race.
“I have to give a lot of respect to the home team for this,” Appleby added. During the winter, he’s been a difficult horse to work with at home. On his first start, he was gelded and wore a hood, so all credit to them for a job well done.
“And William, after his triumph at Yarmouth, he rated him highly. I must admit, I sat on the fence thinking he was a horse who was improving, but not fast enough to step up into today’s level – but he’s proven me wrong and William right.
“The horse is unmistakably heading in the right direction.”
“He’ll hopefully make up into a Cup horse for next year,” he continued. Three-year-olds have excelled in the Melbourne Cup in recent years, so we’ll see if he can reach that level.
“We’ll take advantage of today and plan our fall with our principles and management throughout the coming three weeks.
“He’s a horse with a profile that points in that direction. (This is a brief piece.)