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Goldikova Beats Paco Boy at Ascot

SUPERSTAR mare Goldikova put in another trademark performance to land a thrilling opener to Royal Ascot on Tuesday, quickening away from her rivals and then holding off the late challenge of Paco Boy by a neck.

In a Group 1 curtain-raiser that lived up to great expectations, the two-time Breeders' Cup Mile winner, sent off the 11-8 favourite, sat behind a good pace set by Calming Influence and third favourite of the 'big three', Rip Van Winkle, kicking for home under Olivier Peslier with about two furlongs to travel.

The pair stretched away to lead by around two lengths, but Lockinge Stakes winner and secondfavourite Paco Boy emerged from the chasers under Richard Hughes and mounted a sustained and steely attempt to reel in the winner, failing only by a neck.

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