Sky Lantern wins 1000 Guineas for Richard Hannon

Sky Lantern won the 200th running of the 1000 Guineas at Newmarket to give champion jockey Richard Hughes his first British Classic winner. 

In a dramatic finish, the Richard Hannon-trained filly, who was a 9-1 shot, beat the previously unbeaten Just The Judge (7-1) by half a length.

Aidan O'Brien's Moth (11-1) finished in third place.

Hughes, Hannon's son-in-law, said: "I believed in this filly. It's taken a long time [to win a British Classic]."

The victory came 24 hours after Hannon's Toronado disappointed in the 2000 Guineas under Hughes.

Past 1000 Guineas winners

  • 2012: Homecoming Queen
  • 2011: Blue Bunting
  • 2010: Special Duty
  • 2009: Ghanaati
  • 2008: Natagora
  • 2007: Finsceal Beo
  • 2006: Speciosa
  • 2005: Virginia Waters
  • 2004: Attraction
  • 2003: Russian Rhythm

"My wife was so upset [after Toronado's defeat] - I was consoling her all night - but today was great," Hughes added.

"She's a good filly and loves that fast ground. It's thoroughly deserved."

Much of the build-up to the Newmarket meeting had been dominated by the scandal surrounding one of racing's biggest operations, Sheikh Mohammed's Godolphin.

Early 1000 Guineas favourite Certify  was one of 11 horses trained by Godolphin's Mahmood Al Zarooni that were banned from racing due to the discovery of traces of banned anabolic steroids.

Just The Judge  ran a good race at Newmarket on Sunday to fill the runner-up spot for trainer Charlie Hills and jockey Jamie Spencer.

Curragh maiden winner Moth, supplemented at a cost of £30,000,  finished well for third.

After a steady early pace, Winning Express, Just The Judge and Sky Lantern pushed on in the middle of the Rowley Mile course, with the latter triumphing in the first fillies classic of the season ahead of Just The Judge.

Winning Express faded close to home and was run out of third by the fast finishing Moth.

Just The Judge's owner Qatari Sheikh Fahad, said: "She ran a fabulous race.

"She came there to win, she got to the front and looked like the winner from a long way out, but Hughesie has also ridden a great race.

"Sky Lantern has had a run [this season] and we haven't. I'm still pretty confident we can change it around later in the season."