Go Wild at Goodwood
Man On The Spot previews all of the action from the third day of Glorious Goodwood.
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Mark Johnston has won this twice in recent years and is represented by the improving Mushaakis and the lightly-raced Broughton, who found 1m4f too far at Ascot last time. The former was beaten three lengths by CODE OF HONOR at around this trip at Sandown and Henry Candy's colt is progressing fast enough to defy a 6lb rise. Ajmany was dropped in grade for an easy victory at Nottingham and a 7lb rise makes this tougher but Red Avenger ran into a well-handicapped winner in Maputo at Newmarket and, though well beaten, it's a surprise that the assessor has dropped him 1lb. Tha'ir is the class act of the race and bounced back to winning form at this level at Ascot. Everything points to a big run despite his weight and he could provide the main threat.
Richard Hannon won this four times in succession before the run was halted a year ago. Thunder Strike is the lone starter from the yard this time but he ran so poorly at Newbury last time that there must have been something amiss. He had earlier finished a good fourth in the Coventry Stakes when Parbold was just over a length in front. Richard Fahey's colt was strongly fancied for yesterday's Vintage Stakes, however, so his participation may be in doubt. Godolphin's FIGURE OF SPEECH was thrown in at the deep end when contesting the July Stakes after his maiden victory but came up trumps with a cracking effort behind Anjaal. There's more to come and he gets a tentative vote though Jallota, who finished just behind in the July Stakes, didn't really enhance the form in Ireland subsequently.
Saddler's Rock beat Askar Tau a length in this last year with Colour Vision not far behind in third. The latter was carrying a Group 1 penalty for his victory in the Gold Cup and should be capable of reversing the form with the front pair. However, he hasn't exactly covered himself in glory subsequently and fellow Godolphin inmate Cavalryman looks a more potent threat as he had Ahzeemah three lengths back in second at Meydan in March with Saddler's Rock well beaten. With Germany-trained horses sweeping all before them, ALTANO looks set to continue the trend. Anyone who saw his run in the Gold Cup will want to be on him here as he was held up out with the washing for most of the race until his rider decided to let go in the straight where he stayed on powerfully. Hopefully the same mistake won't be made here and he's taken to come out on top, though Brown Panther looks a potentially useful stayer and can get into the argument on ground that will suit.
WILD COCO made a successful reappearance in this last season after a year's absence then landed the Park Hill Stakes on her final start. She will have been trained with this in mind and will take all the beating. No three-year-old has won for four years but that shouldn't prevent a big run from Elik, who has been gradually improving and ran very well behind Riposte in the Ribblesdale. She looks as though this trip will prove ideal and appears certain to go well along with Souviens Toi. Marco Botti's import from Italy had no answer to Goodwood Cup hope Brown Panther at Pontefract but she's another likely to need this sort of trip and any further rain would aid her cause. The consistent Jathabah is well up to this class and may prove best of the remainder.
There have been a couple of shocks in this in recent years which is hardly surprising. Ralph Beckett won with a 33/1 chance in 2007 so his Regardez, a half-sister to the useful sprinter Compton, is one to keep an eye on. Amazing Maria ran very well at Newbury and shouldn't be far away but there are some very smart-looking newcomers in the line-up. Cayman Cry cost 200,000 dollars and is by Street Cry out of a French Listed winner while Inchila is related to numerous winners and looks well drawn as does RADIATOR, a daughter of Dubawi out of a Group 1 winner in France. The latter looks as good as anything on breeding and is handed the vote though the likes of Remember and Tender Emotion are worth a look, the latter in particular as she's by Pivotal out of the very speedy Silca's Sister.
Not one market leader has won this in 10 years. Homage will be vying for favouritism after just failing to complete a hat-trick at Sandown but a high draw won't help. Majestic Moon is improving fast and is just 6lb higher than his latest success at Newmarket. He's well enough drawn as is Shafaani, the winner of two of his last three and not beaten far in Listed company in March. MUHARRIB came up against a smart performer in Law Enforcement at Newmarket and couldn't have done much better. He'll be suited by the drop in trip and can go one better though Pythagorean, who had Majestic Moon behind when scoring at Leicester in May, endured a desperately unlucky run at Sandown last time and connections will be expecting compensation.
Copperwood has won 14 of his 97 races and probably hasn't finished yet despite being beaten here on Tuesday when he completely missed the break. His previous run at Epsom, where he made all with the favourite Highland Duke a length back in third, suggests he will be competitive here. Commend has flattered to deceive but has dropped to a winnable mark and has to be respected along with Xinbama, whose two recent victories have been at Epsom. Mean It has done really well on soft ground and looks well enough treated to run a big race but the vote goes to REE'S RASCAL, who was a bit unlucky at this fixture a year ago and has bounced back to form with a Newbury victory and a good second to Gaul Wood at Windsor.