05/17/2008 12:00AM

Creachadoir prevails in Lockinge


Creachadoir gave Godolphin its first European group-race victory of the year as he held on bravely to win the Group 1, $389,000 Lockinge Stakes at Newbury on Saturday.

Close up in third as the 3-1 favorite, Creachadoir took command under Frankie Dettori at the three-sixteenths pole and held off the late challenge of the previously unbeaten Phoenix Tower by three-quarters of a length, traveling the straight mile on good ground in 1:38.70. It was a neck further back to Tariq, with the two Aidan O'Brien trainees, Australian Group 1 winner Haradasun and last year's French 2000 Guineas winner, Astronomer Royal, coming home sixth and 11th in the 11-runner field.

Twice a Group 3 winner last year when trained in Ireland by Jim Bolger, Creachadoir, a 4-year-old son of King's Best, won a third Group 3 last fall after being bought by Godolphin. He had disappointed when he was eighth behind Jay Peg in the Dubai Duty Free in his 2008 debut, but now looks ready to play a prominent role on the international mile stage. His next stop will be the Group 1 Queen Anne Stakes at Royal Ascot.

The effort of Phoenix Tower - a son of Chester House trained by Henry Cecil - was noteworthy. Coming off a win in the Group 3 Earl of Sefton Stakes following an 11-month absence because of a hairline fracture of the pelvis, he is still improving after just five starts. He has two options at the royal meeting in either the Queen Anne or the 1 1/4-mile Group 1 Prince of Wales's Stakes.