You wait for months for a race meeting at Goodwood – then two come along within a week.
After a terrific sun-blessed season opener on Saturday, they go again on the Downs this afternoon, with John Gosden the early trainer to follow after a first-day double.
It’s all been about Richard Hannon at Goodwood in recent years as he’s made the course’s Dick Hern Trophy – given to the track’s top trainer each year – his own.
But while Hannon awaits his first Goodwood success of 2011, Gosden is off to a flier.
In the opening race, Gosden’s charge Gertrude Bell just managed to edge out favourite Polly’s Mark in a thrilling finish to the totesport.com EBF Daisy Warwick Fillies’ Stakes.
Nicky Mackay settled Gertrude Bell in arrears in the early stages but ranged up to challenge down the outside of runners in the straight.
Polly’s Mark proved a determined opponent in front but 7/2 chance Gertrude Bell eventually wore her down to score by a head.
Mackay and Gosden completed a double in the third as Investissement romped to a 16/1 triumph in the totescoop6 Handicap.
Luca Cumani’s Seta marked herself down as a filly to follow with a scintillating comeback victory.
The daughter of Pivotal was considered a major hope for Classic honours this time last year but disappointed when well fancied for the 1,000 Guineas at Newmarket.
She put that behind her by winning her next three starts and she looks to have improved again judged on her triumph in the totepool EBF Conqueror Stakes.
Always travelling strongly for Jean-Pierre Guillambert, the 100/30 shot went clear in the straight and passed the post three and three-quarter lengths ahead of Anna Salai.
The second race on the sun-baked Downs was the Bet On The Guineas With totepool EBF Maiden Stakes.
With Richard Hannon’s stunning strike rate in juvenile races at the venue, North Star Boy understandably went off the 11/10 favourite. But despite leading into the final furlong he was defeated by 14/1 shot Foxtrot India – ridden by Sussex rider Jim Crowley – by a head.
The final contest – the Try The totequickpick On All totepool Bets Handicap – saw Crowley notch a second success. He steered the Amanda Perrett-trained Four Nations to a 12/1 triumph.
Humidor beat favourite Addictive Dream by three-quarters of a length in the totequickpick Handicap at 15/2.
And West Ilsley handler and former Pompey striker Mick Channon chalked up his first Goodwood success of the season when Yojimbo won the Try The totequickpick If You’re Feeling Lucky Median Auction Maiden Stakes at 6/1.
This afternoon, Moynahan, who has for a long time flattered to deceive, must have a good chance in the first race of the day.
Paul Cole’s six-year-old has shown his best form in Sussex, and is just 1lb higher than when successful here last May.
Depending on which Moynahan turns up, the Goodwood Stakes – which goes off at 2.05pm – is certainly within his compass with Chris Catlin on board.
OUR GOODWOOD TIPS FOR TODAY
2.05 Moynahan, 2.40 Airborne Again, 3.15 Trojan Nights, 3.50 Desert Shine, 4.25 Towy Boy, 5.00 Ned Ludd, 5.30 Rainy Champion.
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