It’s a relief to be back in the saddle.
Competitive action is what it’s all about and although I wasn’t lucky enough to mark my return with a winner at Windsor last night, it was nonetheless a pleasure to get back in the groove.
There’s no time to waste. I’m at Yarmouth today for a book of five rides, in-between which I’ll be keeping a very close eye on events at Glorious Goodwood.
Their big five day meeting gets going at 1.50pm, and both as a racing fan and a rider there are certainly a couple of names I’ll be keeping a very close eye on.
First of all, looking ahead to the Group 2 Vintage Stakes at 2.25pm I’d be mindful the forecast rain is mainly scheduled to land on the track overnight tonight and into Wednesday.
If that’s the case it won’t arrive in time for Ryan Moore’s mount Lope Y Fernandez, who was comfortably beaten by the re-opposing Pinatubo when runner-up in the Chesham Stakes at Royal Ascot last month.
Add the rain to the equation and I’d give him a serious shout of closing the gap and maybe reversing the placings, but as things stand and if the rain stays away as per the forecast, I’d say the verdict will be the same and Pinatubo will once again be too good.
In the same race I’d suggest the step up in trip to seven furlongs will certainly help Visinari. He’s got Frankie on board and looks certain to make up into a nice horse in time, but the 110-rated Pinatubo rightly sets the standard.
On the subject of my good friend Mr Dettori, he’s on board a horse I’m an admirer of in the Group 2 Lennox Stakes at 3.00pm.
Trainer James Tate is in the middle of a very impressive spell of winners at present, and teaming up with Frankie the pair could do some damage here with the four year old Hey Gaman.
This looks a very tight contest on paper with a number of strong contenders, but to my eye the key is whether Frankie can get to the lead early and control the pace like he does, usually better than anyone. If he can, Hey Gaman will be tough to pass.
Last but not least, the day one feature at Glorious Goodwood is a race of huge importance to the stable I’m attached to, given the market leader for the Group 1 Goodwood Cup at 3.35pm is our star stayer, Stradivarius.
I can report he’s been bouncing ever since Royal Ascot, and all being well has the gears to take care of these over two miles.
I have huge respect for some very talented opposition, notably the likes of Cross Counter and Dee Ex Bee, but nonetheless I expect our lad will be hard to overcome.
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