Crimson Advocate flies the flag for America in the Queen Mary

Crimson Advocate and John Velazquez claimed the narrowest of victories in a thrilling climax to the Queen Mary Stakes at Royal Ascot.

A field of 26 juvenile fillies went to post for the five-furlong opener on day two and the George Weaver-trained Crimson Advocate made a rapid start in the hands of his Hall of Fame pilot.

The 9-1 shot, a winner at Gulfstream Park in Florida last month, led her rivals a merry dance for much of the way and it was just a question of whether she would hold on racing inside the final furlong.

Relief Rally, unbeaten in two previous starts for William Haggas, came at the leader hard as the post loomed and was in front just before and just after the line – but the judge confirmed Crimson Advocate was a nose in front where it mattered. Beautiful Diamond, the 11-4 favourite, finished third.

Kentucky-born Weaver had saddled just one previous runner at the Royal meeting, with the Velazquez-ridden Cyclogenisis finishing down the field in the 2015 Commonwealth Cup.

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