The first day of Glorious Goodwood will be run on ground just on the fast side of good after a welcome 19mls of rain hit the track on Sunday although they were likely to miss any showers on Monday.
The draw has been kind to the two Sheikh Hamdan Al Maktoum trained runners in the opening 10f handicap and I hope Jim Crowley has chosen correctly given he partners the William Haggas-trained 4-y-o Alfarris (1.50) over Afaak who heads the market at 5/1.
The selection was beaten a neck at Sandown last time when he travelled like the best horse but was run out of it close home by an inspired Ryan Moore on Melting Dew. The gelding had previously beaten Rainbow Rebel comfortably at Chelmsford and he now meets the Mark Johnston trained runner on 8lbs better terms such has been Rainbow Rebel’s subsequent improvement on turf. Alfaaris is 8/1 with BetVictor and he is an each way recommendation.
Confiding (4/1 fav with BetVictor) created a very favourable impression when scoring at Newbury on debut and several subsequent winners have come out of the race. The time of the race was nothing special, however, and a draw in stall ten is a slight concern given he is was slowly away at the Berkshire track and he is reluctantly overlooked in the Gp 2 Vintage Stakes.
Drogon (7/1 with BetVictor) left his racecourse debut well behind when scoring at Haydock last time and should run well for Tom Dascombe. The vote, however, goes to Hugo Palmer’s Blonde Warrior (2.25) who has steps up in class having ran with considerable promise when runner up on debut and has since won two minor contests with plenty in hand. The selection is 9/1 with BetVictor and is another each way selection.
Sir Dancealot finished fourth in the July Cup last time and he would have been a confident selection in the Lennox Stakes this afternoon if you could guarantee that he would break on terms with the rest of the field. This return to 7f will suit but will he leave himself with too much to do if he fluffs the start?
I’m not convinced Guineas runner up Tip Two Win is crying out for a drop back in trip and the vote goes to last year’s unlucky third Suedois (3.00) who again finished in the bronze medal position in the Summer Mile last time. David O’Meara has his string in good form and he is another each way recommendation at 6/1 with BetVictor.
Stradivarius beat Torcedor (3.35) a length in the Gold Cup over two-and-a-half miles last month but I just wonder if Jessica Harrington’s 6-year-old can reverse the places back at two miles this afternoon. Much has been written about the loss of the suspended Frankie Dettori on the favourite, but Andrea Atzeni is unbeaten in two previous rides on BetVictor’s market leader including this corresponding race 12 months ago.
That said I refuse to believe Jessica Harrington believes she is running for second placed money only and there must be the possibility of Torcedor getting his own way out in front. If he does, he might be hard to pick up even for as brilliant a stayer as Stradivarius. Torcedor is 5/1 at BetVictor and is the each way selection.
At Galway Hermosa (6.25) would surely have gone close on debut with a clear run and she is entitled to come on for that initial experience at the Curragh. The filly holds Group 1 & 2 entries in the next couple of months and she has an excellent draw in stall one. She looks to have the best form of those that have raced, and it will take a good newcomer to lower her colours.
There are a couple of British challengers in the mile handicap including What’s The Story who would have every chance if the rain stayed away but conditions should be perfect for Inscribe (7.40) who I remember easily picking up Rickrack at the Curragh when last seen back in May. The handicapper has raised Ger Lyons’ 4-y-old by 9lbs, but he has won three of his last four starts and he looks to have been laid out for today. The selection is 9/2 with BetVictor.
At Worcester this evening I’m going to take a chance on I’dliketheoption (6.40) whose jumping went to pieces last time although he travelled well for much of the race. That was the first time he had raced without his tongue tied down and that aid is left off again this evening. He is 4lbs lower tonight and he would be a big danger to all if Aidan Coleman can get his jumping together.
Interesting that Gordon Elliot sends a strong raiding party to Perth this evening including Crack Of Thunder (8.30) who has his first start for the yard having won a couple of aces between the flags for his former yard. A mark of 92 looks very appealing if Elliot has eked out a bit of improvement in the nine-year-old who is fitted with cheek-pieces for the first time.
For all your racing odds go to BetVictor.com