For me the Goodwood Cup is all about Stradivarius. Frankie Dettori may be suspended but Andrea Atzeni rode him last year when he won the race. I thought the horse was really good at Ascot and Frankie gave him a great ride on that occasion.
He was quite keen all the way there and Frankie didn’t get him settled for a long way. It wasn’t that obvious to the naked eye but I could see he was quite free. Dropping back will really suit Stradivarius, and he’s impossible to oppose in my opinion.
Willie Mullins has two in this one, and a big pair of runners at that. Pakora was a nice winner of a maiden hurdle at Cork in May, and Exchange Rate won a novice hurdle in Wexford in June. It’s a tough call, but I’d go for Exchange Rate basically because he won at Galway last year in the mile-and-a-half under Patrick Mullins. So he has a bit of form at this track.
Pakora is a decent filly as well, so no guarantees I’m on the right one here. But course form seems to be a big thing at Ballybrit each year.
As for the opposition, Henry de Bromhead’s horses are flying but Canardier has the rating. He’s a 130-rated horse. For a summer novice hurdle, that would usually be good enough.
St Stephen’s Green has an outstanding chance in this one.
I know he was being lined up for this race, and is quite a decent hurdler. He’s been running well on the flat as well.
David Mullins rides for Emmet Mullins and he has a great chance, though Successor will also be of interest for Joseph O’Brien and Barry Geraghty. Perhaps Morgan and even Gangster for Gigginstown will challenge, but St Stephens Green could be the one for this evening.
Riven Light won this race last year, and goes in at 10-1 this time. Danny Mullins rides him this year and the horse is in great form despite meeting with a setback in Australia when he injured a joint. He had surgery over there to rectify this and seems to be back in good form. He’ll also appreciate a bit of an ease in the ground.
He won the renewal in 2017 off 92, but is up to 108 now. He has shown a real liking for Galway and appears to be in good order.
Theobald is in the race for Jim Bolger. His horses are in great form and Kevin Manning is riding a lot of winners at the moment, so you’d have to imagine he has a great chance. Baraweez, for Brian Ellison, is a little better over 7f than over a mile, but he’s a track specialist.
Brendan Bracken has come down in the weights and has won this race in the past, but he’s not getting any younger.