Why the Sussex Stakes can be the race of midsummer

Glorious Goodwoood has always attracted top Sussex Stakes runners and this year’s renewal of the 1m Group 1 event looks no exception.

In 2011, this race became “the Duel on the Downs” between Frankel and Canford Cliffs. There were only four Sussex Stakes runners that day, but nine years on we could see something equally spectacular and even more competitive.

Recent race trends suggests this is no gimmie for three-year-olds even though the bookmaker betting has one at its head.

Siskin will appreciate an easy mile downhill at Goodwood. A top-price 7/4 with Betfair, trainer Ger Lyons and owner Prince Khalid Abullah have every intention of him coming over from Ireland.

The Irish 2000 Guineas hero sports the famous Juddmonte colours carried by Frankel, Kingman and others. Prince Khalid is looking to become the outright most successful owner in Sussex Stakes history with a magnificent seventh win.

A clash of Classic winners is on the cards at Goodwoood with Kameko dropping back in trip. Owners Qatar Racing have had Sussex Stakes runners in recent years with Lightning Spear and Arod.

The former enjoyed success later in his career here, so older horses can spring surprises. Kameko at best odds of 9/2 with Unibet will get 8lb weight-for-age from his elders like Siskin.

Aidan O’Brien has trained five three-year-olds to win this race since 2000, and Wichita placed on both of his starts this season. He is a general 8/1 with bookies to reverse form with Kameko.

Older Sussex Stakes runners not without claims

A four-year-old splits the 2000 Guineas winners in the betting in Marcus Tregoning’s Mohaather. Unlucky in the Queen Anne at Royal Ascot, he has since bolted up in a Group 2 for owner Hamdan Al Maktoum.

According to Tregoning, Mohaather might just be the best horse he’s had to train. The market agrees with William Hill a standout 11/4 about his Goodwood chances.

One of last year’s Sussex Stakes runners, Circus Maximus who chased Too Darn Hot home 12 months ago, comes next.

At 6/1 with 888Sport, the O’Brien trained four-year-old represents breeders Flaxman Stables and the Coolmore set. Circus Maximus is a dual Royal Ascot winner, but a mile in Berkshire is far stiffer than on this track.

Hamdan Al Maktoum has more than just Mohaather among his potential Sussex Stakes runners with Nazeef.

A surprise winner of the Group 1 Falmouth Stakes, at least in the eyes of trainer John Gosden, this is one rapidly progressive filly.

Nazeef will find Glorious Goodwood’s mile feature far tougher, despite winning her last six and having already completed a hat-trick this season.

That is reflected in ante post odds of 10/1 with Betfred for the four-year-old daughter of Invincible Spirit.

Godolphin set to shuffle their pack

Powerful global owners Godolphin could have any number of Sussex Stakes runners, but which will turn up? Not Pinatubo, according to trainer Charlie Appleby, despite getting back to winning ways in the Prix Jean Prat.

Stable companion Al Suhail wasn’t mature enough to handle the occasion in the 2000 Guineas, but cashed in on an ease in grade at the July Festival.

He bolted up in a Listed contest there earning various quotes for the Sussex Stakes in the process. These range from 16/1 down to 10/1, but Appleby may not turn him out so quickly either.

Gosden also has Sea The Stars filly Terebellum, who was unlucky in both the Queen Anne and Falmouth. She stays further than a mile, though, and that brings the Nassau Stakes against her own sex into consideration.

Terebellum is a standout 16/1 with 888Sport for the Sussex Stakes if taking on the boys again. Completing Godolphin possibles is the recently returned Earthlight.

Andre Fabre’s charge made easy work of his belated reappearance following a spring setback with a Listed win. The three-year-old French trained colt has made a successful cross-Channel raid before last season.

Earthlight is unraced beyond 6f but, as he was sired by Shamardal, should get a mile. It’s 16/1 with Betway that he wins this.

Given all the possible Sussex Stakes runners, we could see a fantastic race come 29 July. Goodwood could truly live up to its Glorious billing.

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