Hollie Doyle and Tom Marquand could not have dreamt of today going more perfectly when they woke up this morning. It was a day that the young couple will never forget.
Hollie was fresh off breaking her own record for the most amount of winners ridden by a woman in a calendar year when reaching her 117th winner of 2020 on Wednesday night at Kempton and she continued her flying form into Champions Day.
The record-breaking jockey made history yet again by becoming the first woman to win a race at Champions Day with victory in the QIPCO Long Distance on board Trueshan. It was a truly epic display from Trueshan and Hollie, the pair screamed away from the field in the closing stages to win by a massive seven and a half lengths.
But that was not enough for Hollie to settle on for the day! In the very next race, Hollie showed great strength in the saddle on Glen Shiel to hold off Brando and Tom Eaves to claim an incredibly tight victory in the QIPCO Champions Sprint. It was Hollie’s first Group 1 of her career, a huge and unforgettable moment for any jockey!
The photofinish added to the drama of it all. When the winner was announced Hollie was visibly ecstatic, pure joy and happiness etched on her face.
The only two races Hollie Doyle and Tom Marquand didn’t win were the QIPCO Champions Fillies’ & Mares’ Stakes and the QIPCO Queen Elizabeth II Stakes which was won by Wonderful Tonight and The Revenant respectively.
Wonderful Tonight put in a smart performance in the Fillies’ & Mares with William Buick on board. She was the only favourite to win on Champions Day 2020 and she provided French trainer David Menuisier with his first British Group 1 success.
Another French raider claimed the big scalp of the QEII Stakes. The Revenant went one better than last year and defeated the well-fancied Palace Pier who finished third. The Francis-Henri Graffard trained flyer kept his unbeaten record in 2020, he has a mightily impressive record with 10 victories from his 13 races.
Tom Marquand then took the baton from Hollie’s incredible double earlier in the day.
Just like Hollie it’s been a fantastic year for Tom, he’s won his first Group 1, first Classic and claimed over 100 winners in the Flat Jockeys’ Championship.
Tom’s first Champions Day winner came in the feature race of the day, the prestigious QIPCO Champion Stakes. The winning horse Addeybb was brilliant in the testing conditions, he showed he’s right up there with the best in soft / heavy ground.
Addeybb is a horse that Tom has a real affection for, the pair won their first Group 1 together down under earlier this year and they now have three Group 1s in total after winning the big one today at Ascot.
Tom topped off a brilliant day by winning the competitive Balmoral Handicap with Njord.
What an incredible day of racing’s golden couple, Hollie Doyle and Tom Marquand. Two winners each on Europe’s richest raceday, they won’t forget about today anytime soon!
Hollie Doyle has gone from being asked on the radio if she's going to ride in the Grand National anytime soon to being the star of British Horse racing.— Jay (@TracksideJay) October 17, 2020
Some glow up.
Terrific day @Ascot for British Champions Day - @HollieDoyle1 and @TomMarquand are two of the nicest people you could meet and are thoroughly deserving of the headlines they have made. A real shame there was no crowd but I hope you enjoyed it at home with us on @itvracing— Oli Bell (@olibellracing) October 17, 2020
Tom Marquand, boyfriend of Hollie Doyle, wins Champion Stakes at Ascot on Addeybb— Francis Keogh (@HonestFrank) October 17, 2020
And he praises his partner after her double earlier on #ChampionsDay including a first Group One
‘I’m so proud of her. All she does every day is get up and graft. No-one deserves it more’ pic.twitter.com/rPFaodLM7v