Tuesday (08/01/2017) Horse Racing Preview

Goodwood’s ‘Glorious’ meeting gets underway on Tuesday and is the epicentre of a fantastic day of racing.  There are three group races on the downs as well as a nice Listed contest over in France and a competitive-looking day two in Galway.

Here are the day’s highlights, main contenders and ratings for the pattern races:

1.50 Deauville – Prix de Tourgeville, 1m 3yo Listed Race

Mask Of Time
Good form up to this point but is penalised for a Listed win in May.  Ran OK at 1m4f last time and takes a marked step down in tripe here.

Roc Angel
A colt with 10 races already to his name but he’s still improving.  Outclassed in a couple of Group 3’s recently and he could appreciate the step down in grade.

Bay Of Poets
Gelded after his 7th in the French Derby and didn’t respond well when last seen at Ascot.  Has very close form with both Cliffs of Moher and Cracksman which reads well and so if resuming his progression should go well.

Glen Shiel
Beaten in Listed company last time but progressing nicely and will appreciate the mile trip.

Empire Of The Star
The German raider was third in his domestic 2000 Guineas and will love the conditions here, though he may just be outclassed by one or two.

115 Bay Of Poets
110 Glen Shiel
110 Empire Of The Star
Mask Of Time
105 Roc Angel

Godolphin’s BAY OF POETS is the class horse in this race, make no mistake, so as long as he can get back to his best form after a flop at Royal Ascot he should prove too good for this opposition.  Glen Shiel and Empire Of The Star may be best of the rest.


1.50 Goodwood – 1m2f Handicap

What About Carlo
His best form on the flat has come this year and given his form at Epsom, he clearly doesn’t mind an undulating track.  He’d be better if the ground stayed soft, which now looks unlikely.

Could be the archetypal Sir Michael Stoute four-year-old improver if the gelding operation has done the trick.  The ground may be turning in his favour if it dries out in time but he has a bit to prove yet.

Another Stoute 4yo who went off a very hot favourite for the Wolferton Handicap at Ascot but flopped.  He’s drawn wide this time too but has plenty more to give and will be expected to come back to his best.

Murad Khan
Improved markedly after the cruellest cut of all to win at Windsor and may appreciate the step up in trip here.  Every chance but could have done with a slightly better draw.

Speed Company
A competitive type and well drawn, but perhaps doesn’t have a lot extra to pull out of the bag and this is a competitive race.

UAE Prince
A classic middle distance four-year-old improver with a good handler.  Close 4th in the John Smith’s Cup last time at York where he was drawn wide, much like here, with another big run very likely.

Just behind UAE Prince in the John Smith’s last time on the same weights as this time, though he was drawn 7 stalls ‘better’ but is positions just 3 stalls away this time.  The presence of Ryan Moore is a positive though and that last run was his seasonal debut.

Dark Red
Trip and ground could be perfect here and he ran really well at HQ at the weekend.  He’s very well drawn here, has Oisin Murphy on board and looks certain to run a big race.

Naturally there are a few in here with chances, but from a good draw Ed Dunlop’s DARK RED may have an outstanding chance to land a big prize.  Garcia may improve past UAE Prince while Murad Khan is another with place chances.


2.25 Goodwood – Vintage Stakes, 7f 2yo Group 2

Cold Stare
Trained over in France, he was a good winner in Listed company last time and deserves his place in the field despite looking as though he may have limitations.

Expert Eye
Sir Michael Stoute’s Acclamation colt won well on debut at Newbury and is bound to improve plenty from that run.  It’s hard to know how much extra he will give this time, but the vibes are good and a huge run is expected from this potential Group One winner.

James Garfield
An unexpected third at Ascot was followed by an easy win in maiden company last time but this requires another big step forward.

Mark Johnston just gets better and better with these types and this unbeaten Teofilio colt can take another step forward here.

Stepping up in trip here after a nice debut win, his pedigree is all speed and so the seventh furlong is not guaranteed to suit him.  The stable have won this in the past with middle distance types and so his breeding is a slight negative.

A good fourth in this sort of company last time and progressing fairly well, though naturally vulnerable to improving types.

110 Expert Eye
105 Seahenge
Cold Stare
105 Zaman
100 James Garfield

It tends to take a 110 horse to win this most of the time and Sir Michael Stoute’s EXPERT EYE is the only one in the field which really looks like getting to that level at this stage.  There was some pro money for him on Monday and a huge run is expected from this exciting colt.  Mildenberger may battle to the line and hold off most.


3.00 Goodwood – Lennox Stakes, 7f Group 2

Regardless of ground, this specialist trip is right up his street, not at his best this season though so far.

Dutch Connection
Reached a peak when winning this race last season, though he had been in better form then, the ground was faster, he was favourite and this time is Godolphin’s fourth choice on paper.

Home Of The Brave
Last year’s runner-up but unlike Dutch Connection, remains in great form.  Taking out his run at Santa Anita, he has not finished outside of the for the last two seasons and is incredibly consistent.  He doesn’t seem to like extreme going so this should be ideal.

Librisa Breeze
Happy at six or seven furlongs, he’s run very well in two Group One’s behind The Tin Man in recent times but may have a bit to find at this trip.

Beaten narrowly in a very strong renewal of the July Cup last time and yet may prefer seven furlongs.  Hasn’t been at his best arguably this term overall, but is definitely getting there and could get back into the 120’s here and therefore back to proper Group One form.

Spirit Of Valor
The form of his Jersey Stakes second was very good and he confirmed that with a Group Two win at the Curragh next time.  Further improvement can see him with a serious chance here but much depends on what level Limato is at.

Dream Castle
Saeed bin Suroor’s Frankel colt has not had a lot of racing and a close look at his form marks him out as a very good type to watch.  Raced on the wrong side of the track when behind Le Brevido at Royal Ascot, three lengths behind Churchill in the Guineas and two behind Barney Roy last season.

123 Limato
Spirit Of Valor
Dream Castle
Home Of The Brave
Dutch Connection
113 Librisa Breeze

LIMATO isn’t always that consistent and so his reaching this level is not guaranteed, however he could even reach a higher level than this so on balance may be a safe choice.  Jersey Stakes competitors Spirit Of Valor and Dream Castle may have a say here in a more competitive renewal than last year.


3.35 Goodwood – Goodwood Cup, 2m Group 1

Big Orange
Won this last year having landed a 1m4f race and comes into this one as the Ascot Gold Cup winner.  Destined to go off at a very short price but is no certainty.

Higher Power
Second to Big Orange in a Group Three and a good winner of the Northumberland Plate last time.  He has definitely not hit his peak yet and so has to be considered.

Runner-up in this last year but doesn’t win very often.  Needs to get back to form rather quickly.

Prince Of Arran
Progressing slowly but surely, his second in the Sagaro marks him out as a contender considering he is still improving.  Showed up well for a long way in the Gold Cup and the drop back to two miles is in favour.

Third in this last year when the ground was a bit quick for him, conditions are bang on now and a huge run is on the cards.  All things being equal, he and Big Orange would be hard to separate.

US Army Ranger
On his second to Harzand in last year’s Derby he’d be marked out as definitely the best of these, though he hasn’t found anything like that level of form this season.

Wicklow Brave
Fourth in this last year but may do a little better now given slightly softer conditions.  Consistent on the flat, he can show up well but perhaps won’t be good enough to win.

A talented three-year-old who is improving nicely and is being targeted at the St Leger.  Won nicely in Group Two company at Royal Ascot against his own age group when he didn’t get a clear run and ended up winning comfortably, though he needs to improve plenty to win this.

118 Big Orange
118 Sheikhzayedroad
Prince Of Arran
High Power
115 Wicklow Brave
US Army Ranger

John Gosden’s St Leger hope Stradivarius has an excellent each-way chance here but may be vulnerable to the more experienced types in a race of this nature, though it’s hard to separate two of them.  Given the value on offer, a chance is taken on SHEIKHZAYEDROAD to reverse form with Big Orange and land his trainer a Group One.