Ryan Moore’s shortcomings of late are becoming as highly publicised as the successes of the likes of Frankie and Oisin at Goodwood this week. I chip in in my utter bewilderment as to how Mirage Dancer lost yesterday although there seemed little fluke about Desert Encounter’s victory.
We’ve been treated to the class acts of the week. Now its time for the big field entertainment, with the Stewards Cup and its reserve on the card. Tips for both big handicaps included among one or two others.
1:50 – TOMMY G
This selection was decided almost by default as I cannot find enough reasons for any of the opposing 23 to stop Tommy G defending his title. He hasn’t been consistent this season, but has shown that at least some ability has been retained since the winter break and, much more obviously, he won this off 3lb higher last year. A few in this field re-oppose from last year, yet off less favourable terms and the step back to six furlongs should benefit Jim Goldie’s six-year-old with the front-running Ballyquin drawn alongside in stall 19 and likely to force a pace.
2:25 – BARTHOLOMEU DIAS
King’s Advice keeps winning and a 7lb penalty may not stop him given how much in hand he had at Newmarket, but the Northumberland Plate form entitles Bartholomeu Dias to a lot of respect. He finished ahead of the aforementioned in that race and is now in receipt of 10lb as opposed to 7lb. Charlie Hills’ charge didn’t see out the two mile trip and so the drop to 1m6f should pose few problems. The worry would be that he hasn’t run on turf since last season, but I would imagine the team must have sound enough reasons for changing back at such a high profile meeting.
3:00 – MANUELA DE VEGA
Enbihaar and Dramatic Queen have traded blows in recent middle distance and staying contests for fillies and mares. Both are respected as they currently own this level, but they must concede a stone to the four three-year-olds. There’s been eyecatching support for South Sea Pearl but Manuela De Vega has been fourth and fifth respectively in the Epsom and Irish Oaks without losing too much credibility. She was a touch disappointing in the latter, but hinted that staying may be her thing in the former and she has enough ability to strongly contend on these terms.
3:40 – ALJADY E/W, KIMIFIVE E/W
Try as I might, I can’t split these two and they both represent value. Khaadem and Cosmic Law will appeal as three-year-olds with their allowance, but Aljady is back over six furlongs having run over seven here earlier in the week. Both his runs at Goodwood to date can potentially be forgiven for being over an inadequate trip and his only turn over six this seasons saw him finish a decent third at York off a 1lb higher mark than today’s. With Thomas Greatrex claiming 5lb, he could prove dangerous towards the foot of the weights. Kimifive meanwhile, is another stepping back from seven furlongs. The reverse of Aljady, that would usually be his optimum journey, but he won over six around this time last year and has form alongside Friday’s winner Beat le Bon, as well as winning his only start at this track this season three months ago. I strongly advise waiting for the result of the first, however, as both have extreme draws (28 & 26 respectively), so if there’s a significant low draw bias, stave off. Anything else, and both of these can trouble the stewards.
5:25 – GIFTS OF GOLD
It would be a big surprise if this didn’t go to the Godolphin gelding. Not only did he cosily win a maiden at the end of June, but his mark is fair and Cieren Fallon takes the mount, which is almost cheating in an apprentice handicap. He would have to have done nothing in between times to get beaten and even then the skill of his jockey could save him.