Goodwood Friday Preview

Good morning all,

Well over halfway through the week now and the first of a couple of days working in the Silver Ring for me now. The Friday and Saturday are, by far and away, the busiest days at Goodwood this week, so Daren requires a bit of help.

Not a lot to cheer about yesterday, with just Wild Illusion winning, but I did see some for the future in the nursery and 2yo maiden races, and I'll pass those on next week when things have quietened down a bit. 

1.50 – Glorious Stakes (1m4f)

Eminent is arguably better class than these and takes a step down the ladder here, but knowing exactly what sort of form he comes into this race in is hard to say. That, plus the step up to 1m4f here, are questions that need answering and I’d rather look elsewhere.

Red Verdon is another with an obvious chance on form after his second to Crystal Ocean but the worry with him is that he simply finds winning hard. Mirage Dancer is short enough and Top Tug has plenty going for him in terms of trip, track and ground but this is probably beyond him, so you end up coming back to the evergreen Second Step, who has form figures here of 312, goes on all grounds and is very consistent. Comes here in winning form (which has been franked) and looks a solid choice.

2.25 – Bonhams Thoroughbred Stakes (1m)

One or two of these have claims to being better than this grade, namely the unexposed pair of Regal Reality and Glorious Journey, both of whom remain unexposed, but I like the claims of Ostillo, who might get an easy lead here (although Chief Ironside might go forward, especially over this trip). He won the Britannia with a bit in hand and although it’s a different track to cope with here, I think he might handle it. Worth a try to make all.

3.00 – Unibet Mile Handicap (1m)

The usual cavalry charge. The first one to catch the eye is current favourite Shady McCoy, who seems to have been written off on the back his run in the International. I get the fact he’s probably better at 7f than a mile (never won at this trip) but he’s shaping as though he’s worth another crack at it again. He almost “won” the race in his group on Saturday, going down by a neck to Zap (9th/10th respectively) and even though stall 16 is no help, I still think we could nick some place money at a track he likes (2 wins from 5 starts here, and a couple of other unlucky runs). Has won after a quick turnaround in the past, too.

Original Choice is the other that catches the eye. A big field mile handicap might be just what he needs to show his best and I’m hoping the ground hasn’t completely dried up and there’s a drop of juice left (update – 8mm of watering overnight will help no end), as that would suit him as well. He tried 10f here earlier in the week, which showed he handles the track well (stablemate Alfaaris won the race) and afterwards William Haggas said this was the plan. All of which suggests he could run a good race here.

3.35 – Qatar Stakes (5f)

Battash won this with a bit in hand last year and has the penalty to carry this time around, but this is easier than the Kings Stand and there’s no Lady Aurelia to soften him up this time either. He holds a class advantage over most of these and will be tough to beat, with stall 1 ideal.

If there’s an e/w poke in the race it’s possibly Muthmir, who blew any chance he had at York last time with a slow start, and to that extent a change of headgear to liven him up a bit is probably no bad thing. I’ve been against him at shorter prices this season as he’s had hard tasks and is definitely not the horse he was but in fairness, he’s almost proved me wrong a couple of times. You’re getting 12’s not 4s here anyway, and a late thrust can see him in the frame.

Today's selection – Original Choice (e/w) 3.00 Goodwood

Good luck with all your bets today,

David.

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