THE Goodwood Cup is effectively a rematch of the Ascot Gold Cup over a shorter trip – and it looks a real cracker.
Stradivarius again takes on Cross Counter and Dee Ex Bee for Sussex Downs supremacy.
Stradivarius bids to win the Goodwood Cup for the third time on the trot[/caption]
1. Cross Counter – Charlie Appleby/James Doyle (4-1)
Wonderful servant for Godolphin won last year’s Melbourne Cup before following up in Dubai.
Given too much to do at Royal Ascot and the longer trip probably stretched him a touch but returned to the scene of his Gordon Stakes victory he could well get much closer to the favourite.
2. Dee Ex Bee – Mark Johnston/Silvestre De Sousa (5-1)
Staying trips always looked his bread and butter and he’s duly improved since being sent over two miles, winning well on his first couple of starts this season including the Henry II at Sandown.
Could be vulnerable for toe over this trip though, and likely playing for a place.
Silvestre De Sousa on Dee Ex Bee
“Dee Ex Bee was very tough to fight back for second place. He was coming back at the end.
“It will be interesting. He’s proven himself to be among the best stayers and I’m sure he will again turn up in top form.
“It’s a totally different track to Ascot – Stradivarius knows his way around there but so does Dee Ex Bee, who won on his debut there and was second in the Gordon Stakes last year.”
3. Raa Atoll – Luke Comer/David Egan (50-1)
Been adventurously campaigned so far this season with runs in Germany, USA and Ireland.
Has some decent form to his name but off a rating of 110 he’ll need to improve markedly to have a say.
4. Southern France – Aidan O’Brien/Ryan Moore (25-1)
Very interesting runner whose best effort this season came when pushing Stradivarius close in the Yorkshire Cup.
Certainly overpriced considering he should improve further for this trip.
5. Stradivarius – John Gosden/Frankie Dettori (4-5f)
Star stayer of the last two seasons won the Weatherbys £1million Bonus last year and has resumed with two wins, most recently landing the Ascot Gold Cup.
Clearly the one to beat for his top team, despite the fact he’ll probably find this a fair bit harder.
John Gosden on Stradivarius
“Obviously he carries a lot more weight here as the three-year-olds come into the race and they’re getting a lot of weight – we know about that as he won it as a three-year-old.
“He’s in great form and looks to be really enjoying life at the moment, so let’s hope it goes well for him on Tuesday.”
6. Wells Farhh Go – Tim Easterby/David Allan (20-1)
Looked very smart early on but slightly lost his way last season despite a Bahrain Trophy success.
Returned with victory in the Fred Archer but needs to find a chunk of improvement at this new trip.
7. Dashing Willoughby – Andrew Balding/Oisin Murphy (18-1)
Queen’s Vase winner relishes soft ground and is unlikely to get that here.
Stays for days but isn’t the speediest and could find this too sharp a test.
8. Harpo Marx – Aidan O’Brien/Andrea Atzeni (66-1)
Has some decent maiden form to his name but surely going to be up against it here.
9. South Pacific – Aidan O’Brien/Wayne Lordan (28-1)
Aidan O’Brien’s third contender comes here off the back of a success in a competitive handicap at Royal Ascot, but this step up to Group 1 company looks a step too far.