Month: August 2017

2017 2yo’s to mull over

Posted 11th August 6.00pm

Been doing loads of this as I build towards York. Some more handicappers already on file plus “Those Gosden Fillies”, Haggas on the Knavesmire-What has he got for 2017?, The Ebor-Ante Post etc.etc. 

ALGAM                               (Richard Hannon) £200K son of Kodiac out of a Sadlers Wells mare. Second on debut to Doublet at Epsom when he ran as green as grass but with promise. Then sixth to the 100/1 shot at Goodwood when Rebel Streak was second in the worst of the weather under an educational, hands and heels ride from Signor Dettori. Think his kindness will be rewarded in time.

 

BARRAQUERO                                (Brian Meehan) This IS a good horse. Brought to my attention by Jason Weaver about three weeks ago who said that this horse had gone “whoosh” in winning his maiden at Chepstow. He wasn’t lying, Barraquero led at the furlong pole and won by six lengths. Now he has won the G2 6F Richmond Stakes at Goodwood beating the winner of the G2 Superlative and the runner up to Guineas favourite Gustav Klimt, Nebo. Solid form and the trainer said afterwards and I paraphrase, “He is a Group 1 horse, will get further, more to come, Prix Morny top of targets”. The Goodwood run was his career third and his debut was third to none other than Expert Eye.

My Goodwood Review August 7th  Stars in my eyes The two 2yo colts Expert Eye and Barraquerro, who met on debut at Newbury finishing first and third, winning the 7F Vintage and the 6F Richmond respectively. Expert Eye’s trainer Sir Michael Stoute very much gives me the impression that the horse is very much a “now 2yo” whereas Brian Meehan sees Barraquerro as a longer term project, even beyond the 2000 Guineas.

August 09 2017, 13:07 sportinglife.com Brian Meehan will make a decision at the end of the week regarding the participation of Barraquero in the Prix Morny at Deauville later this month. Having initially been keen on tackling the Group One with the son of Zebedee following his victory in the Richmond at Goodwood last week, the Manton handler is now having second thoughts. Meehan said: “He is in good shape and is just having a few days off. I’m not sure whether he will go to the Morny yet. I will see what the owners say and decide at the end of the week. I was really keen on going there, but I might just bring him back and give him an extra bit of time as he is a horse with a future. Physically he has a lot of scope and he is a really exciting prospect. He could go the Commonwealth Cup route, but I don’t see any reason why he won’t get a bit further. He is a horse that strikes me will get seven and there is no reason he wouldn’t get a mile.”

 

BLACK SAILS               (Ger Lyons) Royal Ascot Albany 6F fillies Preview “The filly I’m attracted to is the Qatar Racing owned, Ger Lyons trained Black Sails. She beat the boys at the Curragh and she wouldn’t be without a chance in the Coventry. She is a long and rangy daughter of Lope de Vega and I can’t see her having a problem with the ground or the trip and she looked very professional.” Review 11th 8/1 “Every chance at the furlong pole but not good enough.” Of the ten to have run since the fifth, sixth, seventh and eighteenth have won since. Entries in G2 Debutante and G1 Moyglare.

 

DUBHE                        (Charlie Appleby) Eyecatcher behind Mildenburger on debut at Newbury when a little wayward in the final furlong, made no mistake at Sandown in a 7F C4 maiden on Soft ground. Buick kkept it simple, jumped from the gates, controlled the pace from the front, got the stands rail in the straight, it was that Soft, and galloped to the line.

Bred in the purple by Dubawi out of an Irish Oaks winner who is a daughter of Galileo! Middle distance 3yo in the making as long as Godolphin don’t do too much too quickly! Entry in the G1 7F National Stakes at the Curragh and not surprisingly next years Derby!

 

ELATION                            (Varian) “Invincible Spirit filly bought for 130,000 gns at the breeze-up sales in April. Half-sister to a number of winners. Sent off at 100/30 on debut (Newbury C4 6F), but lost all chance when slipping on leaving the stalls. Still received a bit of education, running well to finish fifth of 13.” sportinglife.com

7th Aug. C4 6F GS Ripon Slow at stalls again. Travelled with little cover but SDS made sure she got the job done. Not very big! Mark Kershaw, representing owners Highclere Thoroughbred, said: “We’re very pleased with that, it looked a nice maiden. “She didn’t have the best of draw (two) and the ground was softer than she’d like. I think seven furlongs on nice ground will see her in a better light.”

Trainers blog Roger said: “Elation has improved from her first run and she is going the right way. She did well under the circumstances here and she still showed her inexperience when hitting the front. She should continue to improve and we will probably look at 7f options next time.”

 

EXPERT EYE                      (Sir Michael Stoute) A Stoute winner on debut is always noteworthy and when put up by Keiron Fallon in the RP Monday Jury as “one to follow” it has to be in the Notebook.

Newmarket correspondent David Milnes with the two-year-olds to watch 6:00PM, JUL 20 2017

Expert Eye  (c. Acclamation – Exemplify) Sir Michael Stoute He got the Freemason Lodge juveniles on the board when scoring over six and a half furlongs at Newbury in June, a race that is already working out. He has since excelled in his homework and is bred to be speedy, as his dam is a half-sister to 1,000 Guineas winner Special Duty. This colt can be expected to be given entries in all the top autumn juvenile races.

My Goodwood Review August 7th Stars in my eyes The two 2yo colts Expert Eye and Barraquerro, who met on debut at Newbury finishing first and third, winning the 7F Vintage and the 6F Richmond respectively. Expert Eye’s trainer Sir Michael Stoute very much gives me the impression that the horse is very much a “now 2yo” whereas Brian Meehan sees Barraquerro as a longer term project, even beyond the 2000 Guineas.

August 08 2017, 12:23 sportinglife.com Connections of ante-post Qipco 2000 Guineas favourite Expert Eye are weighing up an outing in the Goffs Vincent O’Brien National Stakes at the Curragh. The seven-furlong Group One prize is one of two options, along with the Champagne Stakes at Doncaster, under consideration for the Sir Michael Stoute-trained two-year-old. After making a winning debut at Newbury, the son of Acclamation shot to the head of the betting for next year’s colts’ Classic at Newmarket with a stylish success in the Vintage Stakes at Goodwood last week.

Teddy Grimthorpe, racing manager to owner Khalid Abdullah, said: “It was a very good performance and the form of his Newbury maiden has worked out well as he had the Richmond winner (Barraquero) behind him that day and that gives us encouragement. It is not Sir Michael’s way to do too much too soon and it has worked out. The National Stakes and the Champagne are still both under consideration. I doubt he will get much further than a mile, but I think that will emerge to be the right distance for him given the way he won on Tuesday.”

 

FILLE DE REVE                 (Ed Walker) Split two useful looking Gosden fillies in this 7F C4 fillies maiden on the AW at Kempton. Travelled well if keen and as Verandah whipped through on the inside she was stuck ehind a wall of slower horses, when she got the gap she flew home. Maiden win should be a formality for this Lloyd Webber bred and owned with Bjorn Neilson (£85K yearling) and this Iffraaj filly should get a mile.

 

HAPPILY

Thursday 27 July 2017 sportinglife.com Aidan O’Brien’s daughter of Galileo claimed a Curragh maiden in June and really caught the eye to win this seven-furlong Group Three. Easter Lily made most the running, closely tracked by Dawn Delivers and then Happily, the Ryan Moore-ridden 8-11 favourite. The latter was nudged wide as the field straightened for home and coolly gained a definitive lead she would not relinquish. Happily showed marked improvement the further she went and was much too classy for Shalailah, who was also second behind the O’Brien inmate at the Curragh.

O’Brien said of the five-length winner: “You’d be delighted with that. She looks like she’s come forward again. You could look at the Debutante (Curragh, August 20) and then the Moyglare (Curragh, September 10). We’ll take it one race at a time but you’d imagine something like that. She’s lovely and Ryan is very happy with her. She picked them up very easily.

Donnacha (O’Brien) loved her the first day and the second time, and I’d say she has jumped again.”

 

I AM POWER                   (Michael O’Callaghan) Cost the trainer €40K who still owns him so no surprise he’s talking him up! Bred to be quick, by Power out of a Stravinsky mare. Tall, leggy colt won well on debut on 14th July over 5F at Navan and the third Verhoyen is a useful yardstick with form behind Beckford, True Blue Moon, Too Familiar etc. “Well away, took trail, asked two out, took time for penny to drop but impressive last hundred yards as he powered home. Put head down and tried, likeable attitude.”

O’Callaghan said afterwards: “He’s a lovely horse and we’ve always thought a lot of him. He has a couple of real nice entries. I only had him 80 percent fit coming here and thought he’d improve a lot off the run. He was giving everything weight and we wouldn’t have been surprised to see him beat here today but improve and come out and win the next day. That was kind of the plan with him. He was a bit green throughout the race and just figured things out late on coming up the hill. Pat (Smullen) thinks a lot of him and said he’s a lovely horse, a proper six furlong horse. Hopefully now he’ll improve enough out of that and we can step up to stakes company. We’ll stick to six and step him up in class.”

Big entries – Sunday, 13 August 2017 – 3:35 Curragh, Keeneland Phoenix Stakes (Group 1) (Entire Colts & Fillies)

Sunday, 20 August 2017 – 2:45 Curragh, Galileo Irish EBF Futurity Stakes (Group 2)

Saturday, 26 August 2017 – 3:00 York, Al Basti Equiworld Gimcrack Stakes (Group 2)

 

LAUGH A MINUTE        (Roger Varian) Third to Tigre du Terre on debut. Presuming Obaid is in the country as this £45K son of Mayson and half-brother to Horroob (OR90 3yo who Varian also bought at the Sales!) looks like having his second run just a fortnight later.JUL 26 2017 2:01PM, David Milnes Newmarket Gallops reports:Rumoured to be named after his trainer, the son of Mayson headed a big bunch of workers who had made the short journey from Carlburg to the Limekilns short gallop. The recent Ascot third looked to have moved on from that in an easy spin under Andrea Atzeni and is due to run at York on Friday night.”

 

MAGNIFICENT                (Richard Hannon) Neither division of the 7F 2yo maidens produced anything to excite me although the fourth, Magnificent, is perhaps one for the tracker. Considering the connections a bargain buy at £12K for a son of Zebedee. Could take a maiden for Team Hannon but looks ideal nursery material, perhaps over a mile. He met the much touted Expert Eye of Sir Michael Stoute on debut.

7th Aug. Second to stablemate Bullingdon in Salisbury C4 7F maiden. “Out well, got rail, led, picked up by well backed, stockier stablemate, rallied.” Now for nurseries OR??

 

MILDENBERGER            (Mark Johnston) Godolphin home bred son of Teofilio out of a Dubawi mare who will surely stay further. On debut over 7F took trail, green, asked 2F out, got to the front ½F out and pulled clear. Impressive under a penalty at Newbury, C4 7F. Kept it simple, out well, made all, stretched clear from the furlong pole.

The second Ode to Autumn (John Gosden) and the fourth Dubhe (Charlie Appleby) should both be winning soon.

 

ODE TO AUTUMN        (Gosden) Second to Mildenberger on debut at Newmarket C4 7F Good to Soft. Needs to grow into his substantial frame.

7th Aug. Salisbury C4 7F maiden. Beaten at odds on by more experienced horse. Strengthen up and 8F.

 

POETIC CHARM          (Charlie Appleby) Blog August 12thOver the last couple of days whilst watching the racing and getting my 2yo files together Godolphin seem to be popping up all over the place. Dubhe was a smart winner last night and he could easily be a middle distance Group horse next season. Likewise I was massively impressed by this young lady when she won her only start to date here at Newmarket over C&D albeit on quicker ground putting away Coolmore’s Sizzling. Strong form as the third, fourth and sixth have all won since and there were some beautifully bred fillies amongst the also-rans who have yet to reappear. Held up and travelling, at the 2F pole I didn’t think she was going anywhere but she picked up in some style and ran on strongly. As a daughter of Dubawi the softer ground shouldn’t be an issue and she can win here en route to G1 challenges in the autumn.”         

 

REBEL STREAK                (Andrew Balding) Travelled kindly, progress two out, looking for racing room, turned sideways in run to the furlong pole, straightened out and kept on strongly to the line beaten less than two lengths by Lethal Lunch. This was a promising first run on Turf for this Dark Angel colt. Should get 7F.

 

ROLAND ROCKS         (John Ryan) Ryan paid just £26K for this son of Red Jazz (sire of Scat Daddy) and might well have a bargain. Won on debut C5 5F at Musselburgh at 20/1, then a solid third to Etefaaq in a C4 6F maiden at HQ before seventh in the G2 6F July Stakes back at Newmarket and the G2 7F Vintage Stakes at Goodwood. Caught my attention in the last run as he was bumped out of the stalls, shuffled back, travelled, quickened but when a place was beyond reach, eased. Listed 7F up north or perhaps a decent 7F nursery off OR94.

 

SHIP OF THE FEN          (Martyn Meade) Home bred son of Champs Elysees unsold at £14K as a yearling.

NEWS NEWMARKET GALLOPS David Milnes JUL 5 2017 “The Champs Elysees colt is named after Ely Cathedral, which is 12 miles from Newmarket and on a clear day can be seen from the Limekilns. The youngster showed enough in his work on the Al Bahathri to give Meade something to build on.”

19th July Yarmouth C4 7F Good. “Good size, keen and green, no cover. Asked two out, kept on for third.”

First two may be useful, The Last Emperor (Varian/Obaid £230K son of Azamour. Should get further) and Mr Ng’s £120K son of Ravens Pass, Radio Source, trained by Sir Michael Stoute.

 

STAGE MAGIC            (Charlie Appleby) Catching Pigeons 11th August “Stage Magic may not be a household name just yet but is another Champagne Stakes entrant who has been showing up well in his work. Trained by Charlie Appleby, who has one of the best two-year-old teams in Britain, he is a really imposing Dark Angel and has strengthened up well since his wide-margin Newbury maiden success.”

 

TANGLED                           (Richard Hannon) I was fortunate to spot the potential of Richard Hannon’s 2yo Tangled prior to his run in the Nursery. Looks like he is heading to the big sales race at York’s Ebor meeting. The Racing Post analysis were spot on, “Held up well in touch in midfield, effort to challenge over 1f out, ridden to lead 1f out, ran on strongly and drew clear inside final furlong, comfortably.” Handicapper was impressed and put him up eleven pounds from OR77 to OR88!

 

TOOMER                            (Richard Hannon) Newmarket July review “The one going into the notebook though is the Richard Hannon debutante for Chelsea Thoroughbreds, Toomer. Travelled fine, last 2F out but stayed on really well under hands and heels for eighth but only four lengths off the winner.”

 

THE PENTAGON         (Aidan O’Brien) Sixth on debut behind Verbal Dexterity, put that well behind him at The Curragh over 7F when breaking well from a wide draw, led after two furlongs and by 2F out had a decent field in all sorts of trouble as he powered clear by over eight lengths. Athletic, with a long, easy-going stride this son of Galileo has a big future.

Irishracing.com The Pentagon Rules The Roost In The Curragh Sat 15th Jul 2017, 15:39 The Pentagon put in a very taking performance when absolutely pulverising the opposition in the seven furlong juvenile maiden at the Curragh. Aidan O’Brien’s Galileo colt was having his second start after finishing sixth in a soft-ground maiden over course and distance last month. He was a revelation though, on this good to firm ground today. Aidan O’Brien sent him into the lead after a furlong and the pair were clear with a quarter of a mile to travel. The pursuers, led by 2/1 favourite Bond Street, were all off the bridle as The Pentagon moved further clear in the final furlong to win as he pleased by eight and a half lengths. From a top price of 14/1 in the morning, the winner was returned at 9/2. Medal of Honour (10/3) got up for second by a neck from Bond Street. “He did it nicely and he’s a nice colt. He travelled easy and went forward well when I asked him. We didn’t hack (along) and he picked up off it,” Aidan O’Brien said. “He made his own way home and did it the hard way. It was soft ground the first day he ran and he liked that better ground today. It is beautiful good to firm ground.”

Betfair gave The Pentagon a quote of 33/1 for the 2,000 Guineas and 25/1 for the Derby.

Thursday 27 July 2017 The Pentagon showcased his Classic credentials for next season by winning the JRA Tyros Stakes at Leopardstown. Aidan O’Brien’s colt was already ante-post favourite with some firms for the Epsom Derby before he was sent on his way the 4-11 favourite for this Group Three over seven furlongs. The Pentagon did not disappoint as he followed up an eight-and-a-half-length Curragh maiden success with a solid victory under Ryan Moore. The Galileo colt needed plenty of encouragement on the dash to the line, and fleetingly looked in a spot of bother, but he really knuckled down inside the final furlong to convincingly take top honours. Theobald finished second, a length and three-quarters adrift of the winner. The Pentagon is now available at around 8-1 about winning the Derby next summer.

O’Brien said: “Ryan felt that he was very raw, and it was only when he went past the line that he really got to straighten himself up. He said he went past the line and he took off. He’s a very good mover and wouldn’t mind fast ground. He could go for the Futurity (Curragh, August 20).”

 

THE RIGHT CHOICE     (#FantasticMrFahey) Fahey had The Right Choice in the C2 6F nursery and how the hell did Patrick Mathers get him into third beaten less than a length. The horse was slow from the stalls, squeezed at the start, slow to gather pace, pushed for about every yard, ran on then looked to hang left when brought to challenge! Off OR68 a shoo-in for a 0-70 C3/4 nursery. Headgear may be necessary!

 

TIGRE DE TERRE         (Richard Hannon) In Division II of the 7F 2yo race Richard Hannon introduced a smart type in Tigre du Terre who won comfortably. Speaking at the Qatar Goodwood Festival launch he said “I know he was quite a big price, but I can promise you that we already knew he was quite decent. It was a funny day as we were struggling to get a jockey and we called up Martin Harley, who is a good lad, but he doesn’t usually ride for us and I think people might have thought we didn’t fancy him because of that, but I wasn’t surprised, although there’s no doubt that most of our two-year-olds have really come on for their first starts this season and I wasn’t expecting him to win like that. He’s come out of that well and we’re looking at the Vintage which we won for the same owners (Middleham Park Racing) with Toormore in 2013. It’s going to be much tougher but I think he’s all right – he might just be a Guineas horse next year, but there’s a way to go yet.” However Tim Palin representing his owners Middleham Park Racing had said post-race “He’s a Group horse, it’s just a case of which number Group! We’ll think about either the Washington Singer at Newbury (Listed) or the Group 3 Acomb Stakes at York as targets for him.”

August 08 2017, 10:56 sportinglife.com Impressive first-time-out winner Tigre Du Terre, who is also trained by Hannon, could bid to bounce back from his defeat in a Listed contest at Ascot in the Tattersalls Acomb Stakes at York later this month. Palin said: “We think an awful lot of him and the Hannon yard are convinced he is a Group horse. I think it was a case of going back to the well too soon with him and they have still got every faith in him. I think that first race took more out of him than we thought. We could not believe he got beat at Ascot and Ryan Moore was almost apologetic and said to put a line through it. The Acomb is a possibility, although we could stretch him out to a mile for the Prix des Chenes at Chantilly, where he’d get his French premiums if he won and it’s over the same course and distance as the Lagardere.”

 

VERANDAH                      (John Gosden) Gosden was two from thirty five with his 2yo’s going into this race. This Cheveley Park homebred daughter of Medician and a full-sister to one of his chief money-spinners in Dimension, showed an impressive turn of foot, second last to first from the cut away, to comfortably win this 7F C4 fillies maiden on the AW at Kempton. She’s a good size and should have no trouble stepping up in trip. I’m putting the second and third, Fille de Reve and West Palm Beach, on the list as well, mainly as all three fillies were debutantes and see how the form works out.

 

WEST PALM BEACH    (John Gosden) Gosden was two from thirty five with his 2yo’s going into this race. The only horse behind Verandah two out and followed her stablemate through in this 7F C4 fillies maiden on the AW at Kempton without threatening. £260K daughter of Scat Daddy owned by Michael Tabor, maiden win should be a formality.

 

ZAAKI                                  (Mohamed Moubarak) The other eye catcher for me was the fifth Zaaki, the only maiden in the field as he was second to the G2 July stakes sixth Enjezaat on debut, who ran on well and being out of a Sadlers Well mare should get further. Zaaki is trained by Mohamed Moubarak who has returned to Newmarket after twenty five years in the US but he has one hell of a CV.

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Saturday August 12th Lucky 15

Posted Friday August 11th 5.45pm

Once more into the fray! About time I did a Lucky 15 and star*** resume. Goodwood was not a happy hunting ground! Twelve days to the York Ebor Festival and counting!

 

Ascot 1.05                   STAKE ACCLAIM                     7/1 general

Haydock 3.00             JUST HISS                                9/1 PP + Ladbrokes

Newmarket 3.05        DOLPHIN VISTA                      10/1 Coral 9/1 general

Newmarket 3.40        POETIC CHARM                             4/1 general

and here is why

Ascot 1.05                   STAKE ACCLAIM Shergar Cup is not my favourite meeting as I’m not sure every horse is ridden to achieve its best placing. Teams in a race, a tad unethical but I’m a curmudgeonly old purist and the day has “popular” appeal and we get six races on ITV!

Stake Acclaim has form over 6F, best at 5F. No issue with some juice in the ground, yard in form and Spencer on board.

Quite agree with Catching Pigeons of sportinglife.com, “Jamie Spencer takes the captain’s armband for the Great Britain and Ireland team at the Shergar Cup and the skipper could get the home side off to a flyer with Stake Acclaim in the Dash. Dean Ivory pulled a rabbit out of his hat with Lancelot Du Lac in last weekend’s Stewards’ Cup at Glorious Goodwood where Stake Acclaim trailed home a well-held 15th of the 26 runners. He’s better than that, as he consistently showed in his first six starts of 2017, and can bounce straight back.”

Haydock 3.00             JUST HISS We put him up a month ago at York when he was a very creditable 4th off this mark. He races prominently, if not leads, essential at Haydock. He’s drawn 3 out of 9, Rachel Richardson is his regular pilot and claims three pounds, the yard is on fire with fourteen winners in the last fourteen days, he has won on Good to soft….. How many more reasons do you want? One star* each way @ 9/1 PP + Ladbrokes

Newmarket 3.05        DOLPHIN VISTA Just so excited to see Dolphin Vista back on the racecourse, sent my Trackers into meltdown, he just has to go in the Lucky 15. Much has happened since he ran an excellent eye catching fifth in the Lincoln earlier in the season. He was last of nine on Good to Firm in a 9F C2 handicap on the Rowley course, next thing I know his following entry shows the owner has moved the horse to Martyn Meade at Newmarket. No problem, Meade is a trainer I like, but he is not having a great season and we haven’t seen this horse for over three months. When at Musley Bank I thought, Notebook “Top performer winning three handicaps this season and going up from OR83 to OR99 in the process. 8/10F on Good ground or softer.” Grade, ground and trip are spot on but is he fit? Oisin Murphy is a positive booking and he is drawn in stall one.

Newmarket 3.40        POETIC CHARM Over the last couple of days whilst watching the racing and getting my 2yo files together Godolphin seem to be popping up all over the place. Dubhe was a smart winner last night and he could easily be a middle distance Group horse next season. Likewise I was massively impressed by this young lady when she won her only start to date here at Newmarket over C&D albeit on quicker ground putting away Coolmore’s Sizzling. Strong form as the third, fourth and sixth have all won since and there were some beautifully bred fillies amongst the also-rans who have yet to reappear. Held up and travelling, at the 2F pole I didn’t think she was going anywhere but she picked up in some style and ran on strongly. As a daughter of Dubawi the softer ground shouldn’t be an issue and she can win here en route to G1 challenges in the autumn. Two star** win @ 4/1 general

Review Qatar Goodwood Festival of Racing 2017

Posted Monday 7th August 6.15pm

“…. one of the most challenging race meetings, one which started in bright sunshine on Tuesday, but deteriorated into a mud bath with 50mm of rain on Wednesday, and ground that was soft or near soft for the rest of the week.” The words of an under fire Clerk of the Course.

The first race of the meeting, a 10F handicap set the tone with the order of the first two reversed in the Stewards room. Goodwood is such a difficult place to punt at. Tuesdays form may well hold up but I’m really wary of the following four days after all that rain and then a fresh strip of ground five metres from the far rail available from Thursday onwards.

What I don’t understand concerning the rain is the CoC didn’t seem to expect that much! Tuesday he said 6-10mm and we should get a couple of races run before it starts. Well it started at 10am and they got five times more than expected!

I will come back to Thursday’s fresh strip of ground more than once as it would seem the Weighing Room had decided it was the ONLY place to race, although some trainers were still choosing high in the draw for the Stewards Cup. Baffling. Mind you was the Stands side definitely slower? We won’t ever know as no horse raced there from Thursday onwards, whereas on Wednesday in the monsoon every horse raced Stands Side! Let’s get more positive!

Stars in my eyes

The two 2yo colts Expert Eye and Barraquerro, who met on debut at Newbury finishing first and third, winning the 7F Vintage and the 6F Richmond respectively. Expert Eye’s trainer Sir Michael Stoute very much gives me the impression that the horse is very much a “now 2yo” whereas Brian Meehan sees Barraquerro as a longer term project, even beyond the 2000 Guineas.

Stoute ‘s reputation is more based around his slow burning middle distance horses, often home bred, and that pipeline was highlighted by an excellent win from the 4yo, Poets Word, and likewise the 3yo Crystal Ocean who is clearly progressive. His victory was in the Group 3 Glorious Stakes which in the past has been won by Stoute horses en route to Group 1. Indeed I would expect both winners to have a go at the top level within the next twelve months.

Winter is a splendid 3yo filly seeing the extra two furlongs out well but this was a soft Group 1.

Battaash is beginning to look the real deal as a sprinter. 5F GF at Sandown to 5F Soft at Goodwood, that is some range. Exciting times ahead for Charlie Hill’s 3yo son of Dark Angel.

Whoops!

If they ran the Goodwood Cup and the Sussex Stakes on decent Good ground or better tomorrow I would still expect Big Orange and Ribchester to win. In the stayers event the Orange dwarved Stradivarius but he could be a useful addition to the division with his next target being the St.Leger and supposedly next season will be a Cup horse.

As for Ribchester, a peculiar effort. Firstly Toscanini looks a total waste of time as a pacemaker. Secondly Ribchester did too much too early, lugged out, then ran on!? The 10F Irish Champions Stakes is being mooted as a possible target. One supposes they are working backwards from the 9F Dubai Turf next March!

sportinglife.com “Richard Fahey is not ruling out a crack at Sunday’s Group 1 Prix Jacques le Marois with stable star Ribchester, who despite suffering a shock defeat in treacherous conditions in Wednesday’s Sussex Stakes at Goodwood. “He’s bouncing and has come out of the race well,” said Fahey on Sunday. “I haven’t drawn a line through France yet and I’ll see how he is this week. I’ll make a decision before Thursday.”

Horrible Handicaps

The BetFred Mile was won by Ryan Moore on Master the World for David Elsworth. I say ‘won’ I mean ‘given to’. Going into this race the 6yo was three from thirty eight, often caught in traffic as he made his run. Not here. From the two furlong pole he had a clear run down the inside no less, on that strip of fresh ground. Can’t believe Martin Dwyer hadn’t got leader and Royal Hunt Cup winner, Feng Zhui, glued to the far rail. More on this race in the Looking Forward section.

The 6F Stewards Cup was won by the one horse put down as likely to lead in Saturday mornings Racing Post excellent pace map, Lancelot du Lac. So was this a three furlong dash to THAT five yard strip? After two furlongs those drawn 20+ were six lengths wrong, ignore their form. More on this race in the Looking Forward section.

Did that really just happen?

Breton Rock won the 7F Lennox round the outside coming from last a furlong out, finishing two to everything else’s one. Billesdon Brook did something similar in the nursery but involved some weaving amongst horses as well. My good thing Rebel Streak beaten a short head by a 100/1 shot!

 

Looking Forward

UAE PRINCE- Watch replay! Winner without a penalty! Came to win race before the dodgems in front.
SHANGHAI GLORY- Run well to get fifth considering he was almost over the rail two out as they all came across.

EDDYSTONE ROCK- Denied a clear run in the Wolferton, denied a clear run here, not a lot of room in last fifty yards when sixth in John Smiths. Get Fox off, put a proper jockey on, off OR99 and a decent C2 10F could be his!

SOUL SILVER – Barged as she came to make her challenge. Kept on hands and heels. C2 8F fillies handicap. No higher.

SAINTED – Never got the run when she wanted to. 7F Soft Listed tops.

GM HOPKINS-Slow from stalls AGAIN! Flat course, few bends, 8F. Still on my Cambridgeshire list.

SHYMKENT- 3yo never got a run. Hampered, ran on. OR90 12F O’Meara. May need to get his toe in. York Ebor Festival?

Saturday August 5th Goodwood Update

Posted: Saturday August 5th 11.00am

GOODWOOD GOING Soft, Good to Soft in places

(Going Stick:   Round 6.7     Straight Stand: 6.4 Centre:6.5 Far:6.6. on Saturday at 09:00)

Stalls: Straight course Stand side Round course Inside except 1m4f which is outside.

WEATHER Forecast; Dry with sunny spells. Going/Weather/Other last updated @Sat 05 Aug 9:14am

NEWMARKET GOING Good (Going Stick: 7.6 on Saturday at 09:00)

Stalls: Far Side Course 12f Centre Remainder Stand Side

WEATHER 6mm of rain on Wednesday. No measurable rainfall on Thursday & Friday. Saturday; Sunny spells and afternoon showers. Going/Weather/Other last updated @Sat 05 Aug 9:20am

DONCASTER GOING Good to Soft, Good in Places (Going Stick: 7.5 on Saturday at 06:30)

Stalls: Straight course centre Round course inside

THIRSK Good, Good to Soft in Places (Going Stick: 7.4 on Friday at 11:00)

Stalls: Straight Course: Centre Round Course: Inside 1M4F Start: Stands’ Side

Goodwood 3.35                     AL QAHWA Exactly why I try to post the blog before 7pm Friday for Saturday as he’s a Pricewise selection and now a top priced on the High Street 14/1. SkyBet are offering an amazing seven places 1/5 odds if you fancy one at a big price.

I had hoped Ryan Moore might give us a clue to the draw in his BetFair blog as he is on the 3yo Sir Dancealot and now 7/1 favourite to give David Elsworth the Goodwood big handicap double but all Moore says is, “I don’t know how his draw in 24 will pan out….” Cheers!

 

There is money about (6/1-7/2) for a 2yo at Lingfield 6.45 LITTLELORDCONFORD ridden by Fran Berry who says in his sportinglife.com blog “It’s then off to Lingfield where I start off on two more newcomers in Littlelordconford and Rosedale Topping who was a breeze-up purchase. The former’s trained by Richard Spencer who is capable of readying one and who has got some smart juveniles in his yard this season, this Intikhab colt’s a half-brother to Battaash and it would be nice if he turned out as good!”

Also flagged up by Newmarket correspondent David Milnes with the two-year-olds to watch 6:00PM, JUL 20 2017

Littlelordconford (c. Intikhab – Anna Law) Richard Spencer He may not be quite as good as his Royal Ascot-winning stablemate Rajasinghe but he is talked of in the same terms at Spencer’s up-and-coming Albert House Stables. The stocky youngster is certainly bred for the job as he’s a half-brother to rising sprint star Battaash.

 

Here’s Franks thoughts on his Newmarket rides

Jamie Spencer Published  August 4, 2017 Saturday 5th August

2.05pm Newmarket Pleasant Surprise She impressed me when winning a handicap at Doncaster last time. That only came off a mark of 84 but the form has worked out very well, with the second, third and fifth winning next time, so it makes sense to step up her to Listed company here. She has something to find on official marks in a very deep field but I’d be hopeful she will go well.  I certainly don’t think we have seen the best of her yet.

3.15pm Newmarket Dark Rose Angel I don’t know anything about her at the moment but she is by Dark Angel out of a mare who won on her debut and was Group 3-placed at two, so hopefully she will be able to go a bit. Simon had a decent 2yo winner here last week, too.

3.50pm Newmarket Esprit De Corps This looks a trappy little 7f handicap but he bumped into a horse that was well-handicapped on his old form at Ascot last time and ran well to be beaten only ½ length. A 2lb rise is what was to be expected, and he looks to have solid enough claims in a race in which you can give them all a chance.

4.25pm Newmarket Realize He didn’t run well in what was testing ground at Newbury last time and hopefully it won’t be as soft here. If it is decent ground then he obviously has chances if coming back to his early victories that came on a quick surface. And his turf mark remains 10lb lower than that of his all-weather level, so hopefully there is still some mileage in him off 92.

5.00pm Newmarket Castilo Del Diablo His best efforts have come on an all-weather surface, and some time ago, too. And he finished last of six at Epsom last time. But at least he has plummeted down to a mark of 74 and he hadn’t been running too badly before that. If he can show a glimmer of his old ability then he is weighted to win this. But that’s a big if.

5.30pm Newmarket Zymran His record tells you that he wants decent ground, so any rain won’t help his cause. He hasn’t raced since a modest run at Goodwood in June but at least he has dropped 2lb and a first-time hood could spark him back to form.

Saturday August 5th Goodwood

Posted: Friday August 4rd 6.30pm

Houston we have a problem! After the deluge on Wednesday at Goodwood and the fresh strip of ground on the far rail on the Thursday everyone wants to race on the far side. Two of Saturday’s big betting races will be the 6F cavalry charge that is the Stewards Cup and its little brother, the Consolation. Can you back a horse with a double figure draw in either? The going stick says the far rail is quicker than the centre and both are quicker than the stands side but are the centre and stands rail less poached? More to the point what do the jockeys think? Ryan Moore is in 24, Jim Crowley is in 26, where are they going to go?

The ground is drying out but is it still a case of grinding it out not quickening away? Luckily we’ve seen Goodwood all week but heavens knows what the rest of the courses round the country will be like.

So small stakes and if you have a fancy with form on Good to Soft or worse, stick with it.

I will update the goings as soon as I can on Saturday morning plus some price updates and perhaps why Jamie Spencer is at Newmarket, Mulrennan’s good thing for the day and basically anything I’ve missed.

 

Saturdays Lucky 15

Newmarket 2.05                    ISABEL DE URBINA                 9/2 WH+BetFred

Goodwood 2.25                     GET BACK IN PARIS                9/1 Coral+Ladbrokes

Goodwood 3.35                     AL QAHWA                             18/1 WH+Coral                                 

Thirsk 4.00                              CARNAGEO                             9/1 Ladbrokes                       

and here is why

Newmarket 2.05                    ISABEL DE URBINA A talented 3yo filly with whom Ralph Beckett has been very patient. Bumped into one, God Given, in a similar race at HQ, listed 12F 3yo+, and the ground should be less soft this time and she can get back to winning ways with John Egan riding again and he will know the filly a lot more this time.

One star* win @ 9/2 WH+BetFred.

Goodwood 2.25                     GET BACK IN PARIS If there is one man who knew how to win at Goodwood it was Richard Hughes. Now a trainer his charge has won over C&D, has form on Soft ground and has bottom weight here. Has to be competitive. One star* win @ 9/1 Coral+Ladbrokes .

Goodwood 3.35                     AL QAHWA Having mulled it over I believe the winner of the Stewards Cup will come from a single draw, have solid recent form, proven on going with Soft in it and possibly a bit in hand. The one that fits the bill for me is AL Qehwa trained by David O/Meara and ridden by stable jockey Daniel Tudhope, the combination that won the similar Wokingham Handicap at Royal Ascot with Out Do. Drawn in stall 9 and only three pounds higher than when winning a C2 York sprint on GS earlier this season. Races prominently and should be able to hold his pitch in the dash for that far rail! One star* each way 18/1 WH+Coral .

Thirsk 4.00                              CARNAGEO     Always threatened to be a decent horse and perhaps 8F, Good to Soft ground and those blinkers will see him realise his full potential. Drawn 6 and Hanagan on board both plusses. Good winner of the Carlisle Bell last time out under similar circumstances when Hanagan bought him round the whole field and finished well and up just four pounds here. #FantasticMrFahey put in sportinglife.com blog “Blinkers have brought about a big improvement in Carnageo and I’m delighted he’s got a good draw in the totepool Thirsk Summer Cup Handicap. It’s a £30,000 race and he must have a chance.” One star* win 9/1 Ladbrokes.

 

Last Saturday #FantasticMrFahey sent out Stamp Hill to win at 50/1 in FIRST TIME blinkers and The Feathered Nest in FIRST TIME cheek-pieces at 16/1 so how about a cheeky little Lucky 15 on:-

Thirsk 2.15                  Lady Grand                 (First time Hood)               25/1!

Newmarket 2.40        Paramount Love        (First time Cheek-Pieces) 6/1

Goodwood 3.35         Brian the Snail           (First time Blinkers)                          22/1 Coral

and perhaps

Hamilton 9.00            Heatongrad                (Fahey says “ground and trip are ideal”) 8/1

Friday August 4th Goodwood

Posted: Thursday August 3rd 6.30pm

 After yesterday’s monsoon I thought the ground held up well although much depends on the jockeys judgement of pace, especially those at the front.

 GOING/TRACK Soft, Heavy in places (Going Stick: 5.8 on Thursday at 09:30)

Stalls: Straight course Stand side Round course Inside

WEATHER 49.2mm rain yesterday. Dry and windy since midnight. A dry windy day with sunny spells.

Going/Weather/Other last updated @Thu 03 Aug 9:42am

STOP PRESS  LATEST GOING REPORT

Blustery conditions made it testing for racegoers and horses, while the ‘soft, heavy in places’ going led to a number of potential runners being withdrawn, but the star acts proved that good horses go on any ground, and some fine racing took place.

Clerk of the Course Seamus Buckley said: “There have been testing conditions and it’s been a testing time – last night I didn’t think we would have such a successful day ahead. The ground rode as described, and certainly on the slower side, and there were some very heavy patches out on the course that I was slightly worried about this morning, but the lads did a great job in forking, lifting and aerating to get some air into the turf, and that got rid of any water that was lying about. It was a great team effort and I cannot say how proud I am of the team. It didn’t stop the good horses winning, and we had a lovely fresh strip of ground on the far side. We brought the top bend in, which we don’t usually do until Saturday for the Qatar Nassau Stakes, but having moved the race we opted to do that in order to provide the best ground possible.

The weather forecast is for tomorrow to be dry, while Saturday may contain a late passing shower, but there’s no band of rain. I won’t change the going tonight, but will look at the ground tomorrow morning – I wouldn’t be surprised if we go to soft and even good to soft in places. I just had a walk down the straight for the final two furlongs and was pleased with what I saw.

Rails on the bottom two furlongs of the lower bend on the mile course are being moved back tonight to provide fresh ground.”

Fridays Lucky 15

Goodwood 1.50                     POETS WORD             3/1 PP 5/2 general

Goodwood 3.25                     BIRCHWOOD              20/1 PP 18/1 WH Coral + Lads 14/1!!

Goodwood 4.10                     GIFT IN TIME               6/1 PP 11/2 general

Goodwood 4.45                     TIMYRIS                      11/1 Coral + Lads 10/1 general

and here is why

Goodwood 1.50                     POETS WORD As all regular readers of this blog will know I fancied the horse for the G2 12F Hardwicke at Royal Ascot and I am not going to desert him now! Why? Every time I see a Newmarket gallops report he’s always ‘best’ or ‘impressive’. He won the 11F handicap at this meeting last year, his last run was a solid second to Deauville at Chester in a G3 over a shorter trip and I think he is a typical Stoute slow burner who is ready to open his Group account. The issue is the ground and from what I saw today I think if he handles it he’ll win.

Two star** win @ 3/1 PP 5/2 general

On his Coronation Cup second Frontiersman is thrown in but the horse isn’t the full picnic!

Goodwood 3.25                     BIRCHWOOD I hinted at it yesterday and I’m sticking with him.

“Now here is a disappointing 4yo! Won his first two races as a 2yo and David Armstrong sold him to Godolphin. He won the G2 Superlative over 7F at HQ and should have won the G2 Vintage here at Goodwood but William Buick had a nightmare, squeezed, hampered, ran on etc. Then third in the G1 National Stakes at the Curragh and third in the Breeders Cup Juvenile Turf! To say he was disappointing as a 3yo would be an understatement. Highly tried but the only race he won was a 7F Listed race at Chester but it was on Soft ground and he had a first time visor! At this Goodwood meeting last year he was seventh of eight in the G2 7F Lennox Stakes at just 8/1! As a 4yo he has been midfield in two Listed races and the 6F Wokingham handicap where he wore first time blinkers. His handicap mark has come down from a heady OR114 to OR102. So is this a Musley Bank plot or the last roll of the dice? Fail here and surely it’s the unkindest cut of all!

However he is drawn in stall 2, which under normal circumstances be fantastic, and Jamie Spencer has been booked!

All season it’s been a case of “working well, we’re happy with him”! On course, dismal.

I’ve played each way at 33/1. Is it class will shine through or has he fallen out of love with racing? In Frank I trust!”

One star* each way @ 20/1 PP 18/1 WH Coral + Lads 14/1!!

Gutted but not surprised that El Vip has been taken out on account of the ground!

Goodwood 4.10                     GIFT IN TIME Who ever does the buying for the Cool Silks Partnership is a shrewd cookie and certainly knows a swift 2yo when he sees one! This son of Society Rock out of a Cadeaux Genereux mare cost a tidy £75K and has had three runs which all suggest this could be his race. Third on debut on Soft ground to the now Black Type filly Darkanna, missed the break in the G2 Norfolk at Ascot and then won at Chester when having given up the outside to no one then “thundering home” to nail Ginbar on the line! Drawn 3 tomorrow, breeding suggests could improve for the ground, Luke Morris in the saddle are all plusses.

Two star** win @ 6/1 PP 11/2 general

Goodwood 4.45                     TIMYRIS Only six lengths off Winter in the G1 Coronation Stakes at Royal Ascot having won a Soft ground Listed race at York, she is a talented 3yo filly who gets six pounds off her elders. I’ve no issue with the ground, trip or grade the problem is being drawn widest in sixteen! She’s been held up in her races to date so hopefully Atzeni can drop in then attack down the middle in the final furlong. More of the Breton Rock less of the Uae Prince!

One star* win @ 11/1 Coral + Lads 10/1 general

 

The Goodwood 2.25 is a terrific race with loads of notebook horses in. Beat the Bank, Bless Him, Forest Ranger, Make Time and Zainhom with La Rav a non-runner. Too hard to split them but I will try to profile this race next week as how they run here should determine their targets for the rest of the season.

 

Reaction at the Stewards Cup draw

After the near 50mm deluge of rain that fell on Wednesday, Thursday’s 9.00am reading on the Going Stick gave the ground as 5.8 overall and in the straight 5.5 on the stands’ side, 5.6 in the centre and 6.0 on the far side. Those able to get early selections, and so with all options open, tended to head to the rails on both sides – opinion split as to where the best ground might be come Saturday.

Alex Smith, a director of Highclere Thoroughbred Racing, which also manages the Royal Ascot Racing Club horses, was responsible for choosing the draw for  Raucous (Highclere Thoroughbred Racing – Melbourne Syndicate) and  Projection (Royal Ascot Racing Club), the current 7/1 favourite. He chose high numbers for both – 26 for Raucous and 27 for Projection. Smith said: “I followed the instructions of both William [Haggas – Raucous] and Roger [Charlton – Projection] to go high. I was lucky to get such high numbers because I was quite late in the selection of stalls (16 and 19 respectively) and they are, of course, next to each other. The trainers were both keen to be on the stands’ side. Projection, third in the Wokingham at Royal Ascot, likes to be up there with the pace but is untested on this sort of ground, while Raucous, last year’s third, will be held up and has some soft-ground form. The Melbourne Syndicate is a lucky one, as they have Raucous and Opposition, who have each won three races.”

Trainer Richard Fahey, who has three runners in the Stewards’ Cup, was represented at the draw by SkyBet’s Michael Shinners, the pair selecting low draws for all three runners. For  Growl, a 14/1 chance, Shinners picked stall eight, for  Eastern Impact (20/1) he went with 11, and for  Brian The Snail (20/1) the selection was stall two.

 “Richard’s had a bit of success when drawn low on soft ground previously, and he felt that with the new strip of ground [on the far side] and all the horses coming up the stands’ side yesterday and maybe today, there might still be fresh ground by Saturday on the far side so we went low, but who knows, it could change by then!” said Shinners, adding:  “Looking early at the pace,  Lancelot Du Lac (15) is an obvious pacemaker and  Stake Acclaim in 14 has also shown pace.  We’re in the middle, and obviously of Richard’s three Growl is the shortest priced, but they all go there with claims.”

Rosie Margarson, representing this week’s Group One Qatar Sussex Stakes-winning trainer Andrew Balding, selected draw 20 for  Donjuan Triumphant (16/1), said: “Andrew wanted an even number so the horse can go in the stalls later, and ideally wanted 14, but we were unable to get that. We want to come stands’ side in the hope for better ground, hence the selection of 20.”

Thursday August 3rd Goodwood

Posted: Wednesday August 1st 5.30pm

 More Downs than Ups! No selections for Thursday for two reasons. Firstly with the ground going surely softer than soft, too many questions such as where will they race, who will act on it etc. etc. and the concern over non-runners and late withdrawls. Hopefully some fancies for Friday.

For what it’s worth in the 3.00 Richmond G2 6F for 2yo’s I had pencilled in Headway and Barraquero. In the Nassau Sobetsu and So Mi Dar to give Winter (?) a race. Tangled in the 7F Nursery at 4.00. My tracker has thrown up seven in the first! Euginio, Good Omen, Leaders Legacy, Addeybb, Archetype, Frontispiece and Society Red. All of them should pick up at least one race each before the season finishes!

 

GOING/TRACK Soft (GoingStick: 7.4 on Wednesday at 09:30)

Rails: Lower bend dolled out to the 3 furlong marker. 7f races increased by 15 yards

Stalls: Straight course Stand side Round course Inside

WEATHER 15mm rain to 2pm. Further rain for today. Tomorrow looks dry.

OTHER Fresh ground last 3.5 furlongs in the straight and the top bend

Going/Weather/Other last updated @Wed 02 Aug 2:06pm

 

What happened to Ribchester? Here’s what jockey William Buick told the stewards.

Race 4 – 3:35pm. THE QATAR SUSSEX STAKES (CLASS 1) (Group 1) (British Champions Series)

The Stewards held an enquiry to consider why William Buick, the rider of RIBCHESTER (IRE), placed second, had appeared to ease for a few strides approaching the final furlong. Having heard his evidence and viewed recordings of the race they noted his explanation that the gelding had lugged right-handed, and being mindful that he may run onto the heels of the winner, HERE COMES WHEN (IRE), he eased for a few strides before continuing to ride when the colt became re-balanced and ran straight again.”

A philosophical Fahey said of Ribchester: “William just felt he was dropping away there two down and then he came back again. It’s extreme conditions out there, I was very worried – it’s not for a Flat horse to be racing on, it’s National Hunt horses. But he’s run a mighty race and he showed good heart to nearly get back up. Maybe he was a bit lonely in front and half-pulled up a bit, but that’s racing, we live to fight another day. If you could back winners today you’d be a genius, that’s why bookmakers love conditions like this. They get results and they’ve got one today. I’m disappointed, you come here expecting to win and you don’t, so you are disappointed. It was a strange race, I’d like to see it again.”

 

BetFred Mile Friday 3.00 Goodwood

EL VIP                                  (Luca Cumani) Dettori rides and they are drawn in stall 12. Personally would have preferred Spencer and is 12 a good draw? Will they come to the stand rail? Fresh six metres on the far rail for Thursday but will it be cut up by Friday? I think it has all the makings of resembling Dodgems entering the home straight.

Earlier on this week on BetPrime website ”….Racing and Football Outlook and the Weekender newspapers, and this week Luca Cumani (gives the impression of a reserved character) talked at length and about his horses and made some very good points. For example when talking about EL Vip’s prospects for the Betfred Mile at Goodwood Cumani said: “He goes for the Betfred Mile next week and granted a decent draw he’d probably be my best chance of the meeting”.

BIRCHWOOD                  (#FantasticMrFahey) Now here is a disappointing 4yo! Won his first two races as a 2yo and David Armstrong sold him to Godolphin. He won the G2 Superlative over 7F at HQ and should have won the G2 Vintage here at Goodwood but William Buick had a nightmare, squeezed, hampered, ran on etc. Then third in the G1 National Stakes at the Curragh and third in the Breeders Cup Juvenile Turf! To say he was disappointing as a 3yo would be an understatement. Highly tried but the only race he won was a 7F Listed race at Chester but it was on Soft ground and he had a first time visor! At this Goodwood meeting last year he was seventh of eight in the G2 7F Lennox Stakes at just 8/1! As a 4yo he has been midfield in two Listed races and the 6F Wokingham handicap where he wore first time blinkers. His handicap mark has come down from a heady OR114 to OR102. So is this a Musley Bank plot or the last roll of the dice? Fail here and surely it’s the unkindest cut of all!

However he is drawn in stall 2, which under normal circumstances be fantastic, and Jamie Spencer has been booked!

All season it’s been a case of “working well, we’re happy with him”! On course, dismal.

I’ve played each way at 33/1. Is it class will shine through or has he fallen out of love with racing? In Frank I trust!

Wednesday August 2nd Goodwood

Posted: Tuesday August 1st 6.30pm

Never easy on the Downs! I’ll give a brief summary of the Festival each day then a more detailed report post-Festival. Goodwood Tuesday. First race was classic Goodwood. Total mess. Expert Eye looked the real deal in the 7F 2yo Vintage. 50/1 wins Lennox, nuff said! Nice run from Desert Skyline third in the Goodwood Cup.

 

GOING/TRACK Good (Straight Good to Soft in places) (GoingStick: 7.2 on Tuesday at 11:30)

Stalls: Straight course Stand side Round course Inside except 1m 4f which is outside. 2m 5f race flip start.

WEATHER Dry over the last 48 hours. A dry day forecast today. Rain moving into the area late morning tomorrow.

Going/Weather/Other last updated @Tue 01 Aug 12:04pm

 

Ribchester will need to bring his ‘A’ game to Goodwood if he is to give seven pounds to dual Guineas winner and four times G1 winner Churchill in the Sussex Stakes although the 3yo has a few questions to answer after Royal Ascot. Come on #FantasticMrFahey!

Fahey on sportinglife.com “Everything has gone according to plan since Royal Ascot, there haven’t been any hiccups at all and we have no excuses. He was very good in the Queen Anne and I hope he’ll be just as good. He was touched off in the race last season and that means I’m confident he’ll handle the track perfectly well. We’re in a privileged position regarding the ground too – there are no worries on that front. If there’s more rain he’ll handle the cut – if it dries out he’ll be fine too. It’s very rare a trainer can say that about any horse – let alone a top-class one. This is a big test for him though and I have an awful lot of respect for Churchill.”

 

Wednesdays Lucky 15

Goodwood 2.25                     WOLF COUNTRY                     16/1 WH + Ladbrokes               

Goodwood 4.45                     EBBESBOURNE                       6/1 general                  

Goodwood 5.50                     SUN LOVER                             5/1 general                  

Galway 5.35                            SANDYMOUNT DUKE             14/1 PP 12/1 general    

 

and heres why

 

Goodwood 2.25                     WOLF COUNTRY Plenty of horses I’m Tracking run here.

Sofia’s Rock Mark Johnstone/Ryan Moore. I think he wants further and quicker ground although Goodwood is a front runners track. “The third, Sofia’s Choice, remains of interest in any 3yo 14F contest which is run on a flat track that suits front runners. The Melrose Handicap at York would seem suitable, C2 0-105 14F 3yo, as long as he stays on OR100!”

Galactic Prince Andrew Balding/David Probert I’ll bet connections are delighted to have squeezed into this race and although four pounds wrong in the handicap only has 8st on his back. However I think there is a bit too much class in opposition for him in this race. “Back in third behind Bin Battuta was a staying on Galactic Prince. For a 3yo gelding by Dubawi out of Opera Gal (OR105) a Galileo mare, surely Andrew Balding can place him to win another staying handicap 12/14F off OR80. There is an 11F 0-90 C3 3yo handicap that closes the Friday of the Qatar Goodwood Festival.”

The one I like is Godolphins Wolf Country. Went on my “2yo’s to follow as 3yo’s list” when he hacked up in his maiden on easy ground at Yarmouth last backend. He was fifth in the 13F G3 Bahrain Trophy at HQ, fifth in the G2 10F Dante at York and opened his 3yo season with a Listed 10F win on Good to Soft at Saint Cloud. As a front runner he has the plum draw in stall 1. Adam Kirby has an excellent record in Goodwood handicaps, won this year’s Festival opener albeit with the assistance of the stewards! This is Wolf Country’s trip, he’ll act on this slower ground and this stoutly bred son of Dubawi makes his handicap mark off OR103. Every post a winning post please Adam.

One star* each way @ 16/1 with WH + Ladbrokes

Goodwood 4.45                     EBBESBOURNE Lightly raced, home bred daughter of Teofilio out of an Oasis Dream mare who has won two of her four starts and as a 2yo who won on debut for this yard makes her of particular interest. Not the biggest but a talented filly who sits off the pace and finishes strongly. Won well at York in a C3 10F fillies handicap in a first time hood and was a tad unlucky when she had her run checked when second to Newbury in a fillies listed race over 10F. She goes back into handicap company for an all aged fillies C2 10F handicap with Jim Crowley riding and they come from stall 2. That’s an awful lot to like.

Two star** win @ 6/1 general

Goodwood 5.50                     SUN LOVER £360K yearling out of Tatts Book 1 by Oasis Dream out of an unraced dam, herself bred in the purple albeit US influenced,and now owned by Obaid. Lightly raced, twice as a 2yo then moved from Cumani to Varian, then twice as a 3yo. Gelded then twice second this season, he may have only won once but he’s consistent, 62-21-22. He started handicapping off OR85 and is currently on OR89. He is a barrel chested, enthusiastic unit and seems to be strengthening up. Ground doesn’t seem a concern, C3 7F seem within his scope currently so no surprise to see him entered in the 5.50 at Goodwood on Wednesday in a C3 7F 3yo+ handicap (3yo’s get 6lb), Atzeni is jocked up. He doesn’t do anything quickly, when he won he made all, so ridden prominently from a low draw would be ideal.

Two star** win @ 5/1 general

Galway 5.35                            SANDYMOUNT DUKE This is a fantastic race over a tough track, last two fences close together in the dip on the home turn and none in the straight! I am going for the class angle with sandymount Duke who thrives in the summer, has won on his last three visits to the racecourse, he’s won a novice hurdle at Galway, he was good enough to finish third to Bellshill in the G1 3m hurdle at the Punchestown Festival, he’s won four of his seven chase starts, this is his best trip and Danny Mullins rides. Here’s what mercurial trainer said after his prep race win in a Flat maiden!

“Jessica Harrington has set her sights on the Galway Plate with Sandymount Duke after he claimed a third win on the bounce at Leopardstown on Thursday evening. The eight-year-old, who races in the colours of owner-breeder Ronnie Wood (Yes, that one! Ed.), made a successful switch to the Flat to win in the hands of Harrington’s daughter Kate, supplementing recent chase victories at Punchestown and Down Royal. Sandymount Duke triumphed by five lengths and Harrington is now looking forward to the feature event at Galway on August 2. She said: “I thought a mile and seven (furlongs) might be a bit short for him and the only way to ride him is to bowl along. I think he got such a fright coming out of the stalls that it took a little while to get in front, but she said he was super all the way. He loves that ground and bounces off it. It’s the Galway Plate now and we’ll see what happens. He won’t mind if the ground is a bit slower. He’s won 10 races now – a flat race, bumper, hurdles and chases. He’s become a part of the furniture. I think Ronnie is going to come to Galway. I was talking to him there (by phone) and he’s thrilled.”

One star* each way @ 14/1 PP 12/1 general

 

TOOMER            (Richard Hannon) In my Newmarket July review “The one going into the notebook though is the Richard Hannon debutante for Chelsea Thoroughbreds, Toomer. Travelled fine, last 2F out but stayed on really well under hands and heels for eighth but only four lengths off the winner.” Runs in the 6F 4.10 fillies maiden and @ 16/1 general is worth one star* each way.

Tuesday August 1st Goodwood Update

Posted Tuesday 1pm

I had hoped to do an ante post piece on Fridays BetFred Mile and Saturdays Stewards cup but the weather forecast for Goodwood concerns me. Looks like they are going to get a fair soaking from after racing Wednesday and even more through Thursday. With it being a bit hit and miss I’ll hold fire until Thursday 6pm. For what it’s worth I’m already financially committed to El Vip and Raucous. Jim Crowley is down to ride Raucous as Ryan Moore has been jocked up on Sir Dancealot for David Elsworth. Moore is also on Elsworth’s Master the World in the BetFred Mile! Jamie Spencer isn’t committed to El Vip yet but he does have booked rides in other races at Goodwood on Friday including La Rav in a G3.

Here’s a weather update and some quotes for today’s selections. I’ll try to blog this just the once!!

 

GOING/TRACK Good (Straight Good to Soft in places) (GoingStick: TBC by 10am on Monday at 15:00)

Rails: Lower bend dolled out 5 yards at the 6 furlong marker to the winning post. Top bend dolled out 3 yards. 2m and 1m 2f race distances increased 10 yards. 7f and 1m races increased by 15 yards

Stalls: Straight course Stand side Round course Inside

WEATHER Dry overnight and a dry day ahead.

Going/Weather/Other last updated @Tue 01 Aug 6:34am

 

Goodwood 1.50 GARCIA #FantasticMrFahey on sportinglife.com “We only have one runner on the first day of Glorious Goodwood – but it’s one with a leading chance in Garcia. He goes in the opening Matchbook Betting Exchange Handicap having pleased me with his reappearance run in the John Smith’s Cup at York. That was his first outing for some time and we got ourselves further back than we’d have ideally liked because of the draw.  He ran well there – and will do so again here. He’s drawn wider than I’d ideally like in 12 but heads down there in great form. I’m very pleased with him and Ryan Moore takes the ride.”

Goodwood 2.25 MILDENBERGER Charlie Johnston, assistant to Mark Johnston, trainer of Mildenberger told RP “He went to Newbury as a trial for this race, thinking that if he won there under a penalty he’d be worth trying in this and it’s fair to say he passed with flying colours. He had to go through a false start at Newbury and took it all in his stride, Oisin was quite taken with him. This is a different course to the flat, galloping ones he’s run on so far and he’s a big, scopey horse, but he’s good enough to be running in races like this.”

Northern Angle Monday 31 July 2017 Simon Mapletoft ATR

 

TUESDAY Qatar Vintage Stakes (Group 2) Mark Johnston’s Teofilo colt MILDENBERGER has made a big impression on both starts so far, scoring comfortably on debut at Haydock but then showing plenty of class in a 7f novice stakes at Newbury last week. He eased clear of some expensive rivals to post a five-length success, despite shouldering a 6lb penalty, and looks tailor-made for this Group 2. Charlie Johnston, assistant to his father, said: “We could have found an easier target but we wanted to put him to the test to see if he really was a Vintage horse. He proved fairly conclusively that he is – he’s clearly well above average and we’re looking forward to it.” Out of a Dubawi mare who won over 1m4f, Mildenberger is strong and scopey and will certainly appreciate further in time. In fact, I wouldn’t be surprised to see him develop into a Racing Post Trophy contender later in the season en route to next year’s Classics.

 

Galway 7.40 GOLD SPINNER Ger Lyons Blog “The big mile handicap has had numerous names over the last few years but tonight it’s the Colm Quinn BMW Mile and I’ve two declared to go to post. This is a very valuable race and very much worth winning and we have been lucky in it in the past. Colin rides the only 3yr old in the race GOLD SPINNER and it’s a big ask for this little colt. He’s by Pivotal who will love the soft ground and will appreciate the drop back in trip after a poor effort last day over 10f at the Curragh. I still feel he was very harshly treated for winning an ordinary race at Navan but I will forgive the handicapper if we can win this competitive affair tonight. (Needs rain) CW 441kgs LR 448kgs LW 444kgs