09 September 2020

Goddess Of Fire lands 33-1 surprise in Leger Legends

09 September 2020

Darragh Keenan steered Goddess Of Fire to a surprise victory in the Mondialiste Leger Legends Classified Stakes at Doncaster.

The one-mile contest is usually confined to retired jockeys, with such stars of the sport as Julie Krone, Mick Kinane, Sir Anthony McCoy and Joseph O’Brien among those on the roll of honour.

However, this year’s renewal was confined to professionals only, due to Covid-19 restrictions, with Frankie Dettori among those keen to support a contest that has raised more than £1.1million for Jack Berry House and the Northern Racing college since its inception in 2010.

Despite having been placed on his last couple of appearances at Beverley and Wolverhampton last month, the John Ryan-trained Goddess Of Fire was a 33-1 shot under her apprentice rider.

However, the daughter of Toronado defied her odds with a strong finishing effort to score by just under two lengths from Defence Treaty and Tony Hamilton, with The Throstles third in the hands of Ray Dawson.

Irish-born Keenan was unseated from Goddess Of Fire on his return to the winner’s enclosure, and said: “She just spooked at the camera. She can be a bit tricky, even at home. I ride her out every day, so I know her well. I like the filly and I won’t hold it against her!

I do my best to work as hard as I can and hopefully the results will come in the end

“It’s been a while since I had a winner – I’ve had plenty of rides, but the winners have been dry enough. You just have to keep trying.

“I’ve been in Britain for just over four years. I work for John Ryan and I’m in there every morning. I ride out for as many people as I can, if they want me.

“I do my best to work as hard as I can and hopefully the results will come in the end and the winners will come more often.”

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