Sky Sports Racing’s Alex Hammond looks to the rest of Goodwood in her latest blog and she’s craving the Stewards’ Cup.
I’m sure this isn’t new to you, but gee-gees is a slang term used to describe horses and specifically racehorses. This week we are enjoying two different GGs, Goodwood and Galway. We have already witnessed brilliant performances in these places. Stradivarius may have failed to beat Kyprios in the Goodwood Cup on Tuesday, but his loss meant retirement is on the back burner, and a reunion with Frankie Dettori doesn’t seem entirely out of the question. As disappointing as it may seem for a horse of his level, a career as a stallion is not going to yield great riches, even as the Gosden team is able to handle this eight-year-old horse and exploit his own desires for becoming a stallion as soon as possible, might as well keep racing, and that’s great news for us.
On the other hand, Baaid had two more assignments at a racetrack before taking up stud duty at Shadwell. He was clinical in the way he won the Sussex Stakes on Wednesday and while he didn’t sweep the opposition, the fact that he remains unbeaten in nine starts, with three of those wins at the highest level, you says what an exceptional individual he is. is. As the highest-rated racehorse in the world, it’s natural to draw comparisons to Frankel, but they’re unfair. Frankel destroyed his rivals and galloped them into submission with his aggressive style, this lad looks more manageable and his toe turn is electric. While he has done all his races on the mile, I can’t wait to see him get stronger in the Juddmonte International because I think he’s going to enjoy it. He is short of prizes to maintain his unbeaten record and Sky Bet have him as their half-favorite to win on the Knavesmire next month.
With horses like Baaeed and Frankel, their racing careers are relatively short, and that’s why we have to be grateful to owners like Bjorn Nielson. He can’t wait to see his horse of his life, Stradivarius, race for his final to be appropriate. These are obviously two very different situations with contrasting stud careers to come but either way it would be easy to call him a day with his star stayer and I can’t wait to see this massive character in action in York at the very least.
As with the rest of this week, Hollie Doyle can enjoy another moment in the spotlight on Nashwa in Thursday’s Nassau Stakes. I know the three-year-old was put in his place in last weekend’s King George, but hopefully the generous weight-for-age allowance tips it in favor of the French Oaks winner, with today’s mile and a quarter trip looking to be its optimal distance.
Moving on to the other “G”, and the union I’m involved with has a runner in the Galway Hurdle on Thursday afternoon. It’s wonderful to have a runner in such a prestigious race, let alone a runner with a small chance. She sits well has been a wonderful horse for Closutton Racing Club and if she could finish in the money at Ballybrit it would be a real thrill. She is 16/1 with Sky Bet and as they pay 7 places instead of 4 I might just get involved.
Saturday, the Coral Stewards’ Cup is the puzzle of bettors. Inver Park and great ambassador are two of the protagonists of the market and although they have different seasons so far, both have strong claims. Inver Park is booming for manager George Boughey and is a recent winner of Royal Ascot. Great Ambassador hasn’t won in two starts this season, but finished third in the race last year, albeit with a lower mark of 10 pounds. He did, however, finish runner-up in the Ayr Gold Cup in September and he did well that day, given that the winner ran alone from the grandstand side. So trainer Ed Walker had to settle for minor honors in those two big sprints with Great Ambassador, and he suffered the same fate at Royal Ascot with another of his horses, master of pop, beaten ¾ length by Rohaan at Wokingham. You need a fair amount of luck in those big sprint handicaps and sometimes you don’t get the green snag. Walker deserves one of his two runners to appear in there and speaking of “pop”, I’m on his side master of pop (nothing to do with the fact that I’m a fan of the Radio 2 quiz!). He’s gone up 3 pounds in weights thanks to his Ascot efforts, but I don’t think that’s going to stop him. He just needs a lot of luck and things to work out in his favor, much like the famous pop radio poser.
Back to the gee-gees then, and it’s only fitting that I leave for Chester on Sunday because it was in this famous place that the term was first appropriated. Chester is the oldest continuously operating racecourse in the world, with its history dating back to 1539. It is thanks to the then mayor, Henry Gee, that the term is used to this day. When he was appointed mayor of Chester, one of the reforms he introduced was that an annual race meeting was to be held on the Roodee. It was his love of horse racing that created the historic site that remains today, and for this the term gee gees was coined in his honor. Now you know!
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