A full Friday to look forward to
3 Aug 2017
It was a case of nearly again for me today as Blond Me finished runner up to the classy Winter in the Qatar Nassau Stakes. Hopefully I won’t have to wait much longer to get a first winner on the board; I have a full book of rides with which to break my duck tomorrow!
I was set to ride Chemical Charge in the opener but the rain has gone against him and I’m thrilled to pick up a nice spare ride on Majeed for David Simcock.
The trainer’s outsiders are clearly something to be reckoned with; Breton Rock’s win at 50/1 on Tuesday and Good Omen’s win in the opener today showed that his horses aren’t to be discounted at any price. I’m hopeful Majeed will go well.
Bless Him then makes his first appearance in Group company in the Thoroughbred Stakes. There’s obviously a question mark as to whether he’ll enjoy the softer ground, but he’s sired by Sea the Stars and most of his progeny don’t seem to have too much of an issue with it.
He’s always worked like a horse who would one day be contesting races of this quality and if I can get him to relax early doors then I think that he’ll run very well.
Up next is the Betfred Mile which is usually one of the hardest races of the week to try and unpick. I ride Hors De Combat who has been a great servant for Dennis Coakley over the years and a horse I’ve got to know well.
He hasn’t won for a long time but has had quite a few placed efforts in big handicaps and but for a bit more luck in running he might have landed a big prize or two. The funny thing with him is that the more trouble he gets in, the better he seems to run!
The ground won’t be a problem and if he’s in a going mood then he could be one to watch out for at a bigger price.
The feature race of the day, the King George V Sprint over five furlongs is one of the fastest races of the year and a real thrill to have a ride in from a jockey’s perspective.
I ride Final Venture for sprint specialist Paul Midgely. I won a listed race on him at Haydock a few weeks ago and he’s run well since too. The horse likes to race up with the pace which should really suit the sharp five at Goodwood and I’m glad they’re letting me get back on him.
I then ride Carouse off a featherweight in the nursery handicap. He’s owned by the Mariscottis who are big supporters of the stable (Andrew Balding) and it’d be a real pleasure to get a winner for them at a big meeting like Goodwood.
He’s improved with each of his three runs and on official ratings should be there or thereabouts at the business end.
Rufus King is the standout and the horse that we’ve all got to look out for; but he is conceding a bucket of weight to us all and that won’t be made any easier in the soft conditions.
In race six I ride Bletchley for Ralph Beckett. If I’m being honest she left us all slightly disappointed the last time I rode her up in Carlisle. I thought she’d win that race easily but she never quite managed to hit top gear; I’m willing to put a line through as her previous form shows that she’s much better than that performance.
If she can get back to somewhere near her best form then I certainly wouldn’t swap her for anything in the race; the softer ground is also a plus as she, unlike others, will certainly able to handle it.
And, finally, I’m booked to ride Londiniun in the last for Mark Johnston. He won the opening race on Wednesday an at this point in time I’m not 100% certain whether they’re keen to double up or not.
If they do decide to get him out again quickly under a penalty then he’d naturally be a big player.