Nature Strip wins King’s Stand 2022: Royal Ascot result, finishing order, Australia wows the world
An Australian miracle horse has politely told the world to shut up after a historic win that left jaws dropping around the world.
This is one for Australia.
Australia’s Nature Strip sprinter is being branded a ‘monster horse’ on the world stage after making the long journey worthwhile by winning the Group 1 King’s Stand Stakes on the first day of the Royal Ascot meeting on Wednesday morning (AEST).
The sublime performance of the Chris Waller-trained star took place in the absence of the meeting’s most notable supporter, Queen Elizabeth II.
As she watched TV from Windsor Castle, Prince Charles and his wife Camilla were in attendance.
It was the first Royal Ascot since 2019 to host a full house made up largely of men and women in top hats and tailcoats dressed in the latest fashions, after two years of Covid crowd restrictions.
The pandemic meant Nature Strip and Waller had waited a long time for the chance to prove the horse to be the world’s best sprinter on the world stage – now they have silenced any doubters.
It was supposed to be a shootout between America’s top sprinter Golden Pal – who started out as favorite – and the Australian, but it turned into a massacre instead.
The seven-year-old blew them away to win by more than four lengths in a historic victory.
It was the first time an Australian had won the £500,000 ($870,000) 1,000m race since Scenic Blast in 2009.
In a race that included the best sprinters from the UK and Europe, there is no doubt that Nature Strip is the undisputed king.
“He’s an absolute monster of a horse,” McDonald said.
“I thought how we came up with him. I didn’t know it was a loose horse. This riderless horse (Khadeem) scared me a little!
Waller was delighted to have confirmed that he deserved to be ranked among the best horses in the world.
“It means a lot,” Waller said.
“We don’t often get the chance to come here and compete against riders from England, Ireland, France, America and even Dubai and Hong Kong.
“To bring a horse here and not just race but win is so very special. It was breathtaking.
Waller said he will decide later in the week whether Nature Strip will participate in the Platinum Jubilee Stakes, although there are already internal affairs.
However, he later backtracked on that comment and said he would now be bringing Nature Strip home to Australia.
The world was blown away by the performance.
— with AFP