While most Irish eyes will be focused on Galway Plate day at Ballybrit, there’ll also be considerable interest in events at Goodwood where the Group 1 Qatar Sussex Stakes has the potential to be the race of the season.
The Ger Lyons-trained Siskin heads the market and deserves to do so having produced a piece of escapology Harry Houdini would have been proud of to win the Irish 2,000 Guineas from an almost impossible position.
He’s a very classy animal but this will be his sternest test yet as lying in wait at Goodwood are Kameko and Wichita, first and second in the English Guineas, Irish Guineas runner-up Vatican City while the older generation represented by the teak-tough Circus Maximus, a three-time Group 1 winner, and Marcus Tregoning-trained Mohaather.
The expectation is Siskin will get the better of the Guineas winners as Kameko endured a gruelling race when a non-staying fourth to Serpentine in the Derby. In this company, he’ll require some constitution to win this off the back of that effort.
Circus Maximus is an admirable horse with a great attitude but this looks the hottest race he has ever contested and the suspicion he’ll find one or two too good.
Despite his lack of Group 1-winning form, Mohaather appeals more. He endured a nightmare trip when a luckless seventh to Circus Maximus in the Queen Anne at Royal Ascot but has since shown his true colours with wildly impressive win at Group 2 level last time out.
He’ll need the rub of the green in running but, if he gets it, he has a finishing kick that even Siskin might not be able to resist.
Elsewhere at Goodwood, the Karl Burke-trained Significantly, second in three career starts, can make it fourth time lucky by winning the Group 3 Markel Insurance Molecomb Stakes.
It could be a good day for Burke as his Spright, an emphatic winner at York last time out, can land the spoils in the British Stallion Studs Alice Keppel EBF Fillies’ Conditions Stakes.
1.45: Oleg (Each-way)
3.15: Mohaather (Nap)
3.45: Spright (NB)