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Novellist storms to King George glory

ESPN staff
July 27, 2013 « Live County Championship coverage | Chartbeat test »
Johnny Murtagh powers home to his fourth King George on board Novellist © Getty Images
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Novellist made it successive King George winners for Germany, powering home in the final furlongs to claim victory at 13/2 for Andreas Wohner at Ascot.

The four-year-old stayed on strongly, finishing ahead of second favourite Trading Leather and Sir Michael Stoute's charge Hillstar to become the second German-trained horse in two years to win the Group One race, following Danedream's triumph in 2012.

The victory provided jockey Johnny Murtagh - who trains in his native Ireland - with his fourth King George winner and also broke the course record.

Ektihaam and Universal set a quick gallop from the off, which left French champion and favourite Cirrus Des Aigles with too much to do in the closing stages. Ektihaam was ridden along with three furlongs left and with others tiring Novellist cruised home under Murtagh.

Following the conclusion, Novellist was made favourite for the Prix de l'Arc de Triomphe in October.

Elsewhere, 25/1 shot Princess Noor claimed the opening race of the meet for Roger Varian, giving the bookmakers a good start to the afternoon's proceedings.

That start continued when Jeremy Noseda's Yeager powered home in the Deloitte Handicap at 20/1; well-backed favourite Tarikhi - running in the Godolphin colours - faded in the closing stages of the race to finish ninth.

The Mark Johnston-Joe Fanning partnership enjoyed a 33/1 winner of the International Stakes with Galacian, which continued their recent purple streak.

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