Good evening from the Major who writes from a very warm Worcestershire night where the air hangs thick but not unpleasantly and even though the moon throws just an inky crepuscular light through a sullen opaque sky, I am able to wander the garden at peace with the bare light pale on the deep green grass.
I did not cover Galway on Monday and you should be happy as I only had one winner, the first of many for Weld this week in Timiyan but that was the beginning and the end of the entries on the positive side of the ledger. Must try harder.
Now I don’t want anyone thinking that absconding for Monday which just had a Galway card but rolling up for Tuesday and the start of Goodwood signals my own preferences. No, no my friends. It is true that I genuinely love the Goodwood festival, it is a magnificent course, wonderful backdrop and small enough to feel, I don’t know, well homely. Yes it has a sense of modesty, even in the elaborate at Goodwood feels in-elaborate. Perhaps it is because we have the pomp of Ascot fresh in our minds – It is a welcome change and allows us to focus on the racing.
However, as I was saying, my lack of Monday post should not be interpreted as a turned up nose towards Galway. Their festival just gets better and better. The top yards are unleashing genuine top juveniles in the maidens, the place looks so damn fun and like Goodwood not so full of itself. Bravo, it’s on the list!!
It is a school night and with the Major required on parade at first light, I shall keep this brief.
Goodwood and Galway – The Majors Tuesday Tips.
Regulars will know that I consider Goodwood to be a specialist track, I like those that have been shown to act upon it, or similar courses for which I would count Bath, Brighton and Epsom. The tricky nature of the course comes in three waves. Firstly, it is undulating, there is a steep climb up the back straight and a good drop down towards Tattenham Corner. That is the second challenge, a sharp left hander as the race is reaching the business end can throw a few off giving their best. Finally, the straight – It has a camber which many horses struggle with, particularly those that might be less genuine and those that are unbalanced generally.
The opener at Goodwood has a horse I want to back in Viewpoint. Hughes has selected Sea Shanty over Viewpoint but the latter has a decent chance anyway (would not put you off at Sea Shanty at 8/1 either) and so despite the Jockey selection and the promise of Sea Shanty who has a 4th in the Royal Hunt to his name, I want to play Viewpoint who won this last year and is one of only two horses with a Goodwood win to his name. Plus Cam Hardie would love to get a Goodwood win and score a point over Hughesie – I am sure he is not vindictive but he is talented, young and clearly full of confidence.
I think Beacon will win the second and while I am not recommending a bet, I do think Fast Act at 16/1 is a big old price. I think that Tiggy Wiggy form might prove even better than first impressions.
Gregorian has to give a bit of weight away but is in the form of his life and Toormore has not really gone on from the high level of juvenile promise he showed… Yet I am happy to side with Toormore on the grounds that he has the course win I signposted as important. 7/4 is the general price.
There is some Northumberland Plate and John Smiths Cup experience on offer in the 3.40 and I am siding with the former line and taking Continuum at 12/1 (Bet Victor, 10/1 generally).
Tony Martin, Dermot Weld, Patrick Mullins and a dash of Ballydoyle. That is about the sum of my strategy at Galway generally. The guess is which one to play in each race! Today they took four of the seven races.
Having said that, despite two of these having representation in the first, I am playing Rich Coast for Noel Meade who has Geraghty booked. The tip has an excellent flat record having won in decent company when trained by Murtagh, who by the way is going to become an important trainer in the Majors eyes. Anyway, this one can give us a great chance at 7/2.
I’ve not a lot to go on in selecting Chinese Light in the 6.05pm but suffice to say that this is a race that Weld has dominated, often with unraced horses and so this one, a rather nicely bred Dalakhani crossed with a Sadlers Wells dam can see us right at 13/8.
Calibrate and Defining Year are being smashed up for the Weld team in the 6.40pm and I could easily make a case for either. Yet, I am tempted into backing the Ellison runner Baraweez – Ellison loves these sorts of races and of the two he runes, this one looks the more likely having done nothing but improve since arriving in the yard from France.
In the 7.10, I am backing Hidden Universe with a confidence that his recent record should not afford. Yet he is exactly the type that Weld brings here and seemingly waves a magic wand over. 6/1.
That is it from the Major for Tuesday. Courage, roll the dice and come up with your own dinner ideas.