Bradsell completed a famous Royal Ascot double for trainer Archie Watson and jockey Hollie Doyle by edging out favourite Highfield Princess in the G1 King’s Stand Stakes.
Last year’s brilliant Coventry Stakes winner showed blistering speed to take command of the five-furlong sprint, but the lightly raced colt hung to his left in the closing stages, hampering runner-up Highfield Princess as she tried to challenge.
However, the winning margin of a length was enough for the Ascot stewards to rubber-stamp the result and confirm a first Royal Ascot G1 prize for Watson, whose Dragon Symbol lost the 2021 Commonwealth Cup in the stewards’ room.
Doyle, gaining her fourth Royal Ascot success, was positive from the stalls aboard the three-year-old and had Highfield Princess for company throughout, in a race few ever really got into.
But it was not all plain sailing for Doyle and Watson, who had to survive a stewards’ inquiry as Bradsell – sent off a 14/1 chance – drifted left in the final furlong and intimidated 7/4 favourite Highfield Princess and jockey Jason Hart.
Watson said: “He’s a Coventry winner over a stiff six here and we were always going to go over six, we were never going to go over a mile or anything. The plan all winter was always to come to the Commonwealth trial here and on to the Commonwealth.
“I thought he showed up best of the horses in the Commonwealth trial, he got a bit tired late so we ran in the Sandy Lane and he ran similar race. I knew it couldn’t have been tiredness that day, even in the Coventry last year they could only really take him to the four-and-a-half-furlong pole, then Hollie had to say ‘right, I’m getting on with this now’.
Doyle said: “Well done to Archie for supplementing him and stepping him back in trip, which he’s really relished today. He loves this track. The way he travelled into it was unbelievable and he quickened up nicely. It was great to be on top of him.”