Racing plays host to many a festival week in the summer months but few are as aptly named as Glorious Goodwood.
Glorious by name, glorious by nature.
The weather in the United Kingdom has been scorching this week and many will hope it continues in kind and we can see the best of competition take the stage on good or better ground next week.
Thinking ahead, it’s often beneficial to take advantage of the ante post bets available to ensure you get the best price on your fancies.
What to Expect From Glorious Goodwood
The sprint king is unusually without a win in 2021 but has only run once, finishing fourth in the King’s Stand Stakes at Royal Ascot.
He is entitled to come on from that performance having been off the track for almost 11 months. That was also a return from injury so there are plenty of excuses.
Battaash has an exceptional record at Goodwood, winning on all four turnouts. He has full grip on the five-furlong division and it would be very surprising should he not return to top form next week for Charlie Hills and Shadwell Estate.
Battaash is once again entered in the King George Qatar Stakes that he has conquered four times. Winter Power looks an interesting opponent after a stunning display at York on July 10. Dragon Symbol and Rohaan, with good Royal Ascot form, should be among the contenders if running.
There are few more popular horses in training than Bjorn Nielsen’s Stradivarius. Trained by John and Thady Gosden and eloquently ridden by Frankie Dettori, the mighty stayer turns stamina tests into two-or-three-furlong sprints. Few can match his finishing speed over the longer distance, though Mark Johnston’s Subjectivist allowed no such event at Royal Ascot.
Leading the way, Subjectivist pushed on and forced Stradivarius to play catch-up. Dettori’s mount was rather unlucky in running and a rematch would make interesting viewing. Sadly, that is not going to happen at Goodwood with Johnston’s horse out injured.
Stradivarius, who was looking to match Yeats’ four consecutive Gold Cup’s at Ascot, will be out for retribution and, looking at the field, holds a strong chance.
John Gosden is quoted by Sky Sports in reporting that his 7-year-old is well ahead of the big day: “He’s been in good order since Royal Ascot. The Gold Cup was a fascinating race and Subjectivist put in a superb performance.
“I’d love to have got in a race with the winner, but we never had the opportunity to get there and that’s life.”
Gosden also admitted he wanted to see Stradivarius and Subjectivist battle it out at Glorious Goodwood: “I’m sorry that Subjectivist is not able to run next week, it’s heartbreaking for everyone involved and it would have been great to have enjoyed a duel on the downs.”
Stradivarius is bidding for a fifth Goodwood Cup and is a strong favourite. Spanish Mission, Trueshan and Sir Ron Priestley make for the shortest-priced trio of challengers.
Mark Johnston’s Glorious Goodwood Success
He may not be as strong-handed as he may have liked in Subjectivist’s absence, but Mark Johnston often enjoys a healthy amount of success at Glorious Goodwood. The 13-time leading trainer at the festival has some of the most game horses in training, they just don’t shy away from a battle. His horses are always worth a market check at the meeting.
Depth of Quality Among the Jockeys
UK flat racing has a unique depth of quality in the weighing room.
Hollie Doyle has ridden the most winners in 2021 so far and continues to thrive but it is Oisin Murphy, Tom Marquand and William Buick who are battling it out at the top to be named champion jockey.
Murphy is currently (at the time of writing) clear of Marquand by seven and Buick by ten. Buick’s chances weren’t helped by an inconvenient nine-day ban a few weeks ago.
Meanwhile, Marco Ghiani, who recently lost his claim and secured an inaugural Royal Ascot win aboard Godolphin’s Real World, whom he subsequently rode to victory in the Steventon Stakes at Newbury last Saturday, is operating am ongst the best strike rates – 22%.
Ryan Moore and Frankie Dettori represent classy options and hold two of the biggest jobs in racing.
Hopefully, all of the top jockeys will be on show, battling it out for top jockey at the festival, just as they were at Royal Ascot when Oisin Murphy came out on top.
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