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Glorious Goodwood - Vintage Stakes preview

On the Glorious Sussex Downs, it's more action from Goodwood. Sam Preen, @sampreen, returns to cover the best beting race of the day.

VEUVE CLICQUOT VINTAGE STAKES (2:35 GLORIOUS GOODWOOD – WEDNESDAY)

A field of 14 runners line up for the Vintage Stakes, with some lightly raced, but very promising, 2 year olds.

Course and Distance winner Olympic Glory heads here after going one better then his Group 2 second at Ascot by taking a Group 2 at Newmarket on a step up in trip to 7 furlongs. Running on better ground for this and being one of the few runners to have the benefit of being a distance winner, he could well take this. Godolphin sends Artigiano who was last seen finishing fourth at Newmarket on his first start over 7 furlongs on the testing conditions. He has a less then pleasing record in Group races and the other Godolphin runner looks more dangerous. Birdman was last seen running the race of his life in Group 2 company on his first start over 7 furlongs, finishing just behind Olympic Glory. He deserves another chance to turn the tables with the latter runner and can be in with a chance here.

The most experienced runner in the field, Chilworth Icon, heads here after disappointing at Newmarket last time out. He has disappointed over 7 furlongs before at Ascot and looks likely to struggle here. John Gosden sends in Ghurair (I hate typing these Hamdan Al Maktoum names…) who finished an impressive winner on his debut at Newmarket in testing conditions on his sole start to date. He’s worth jotting down now he runs in better conditions for the first time and could run into a place.

Luhaif finally lost his maiden tag on his fourth start when romping to success at Newmarket on his second start over 7 furlongs before disappointing in Group 2 company. The testing conditions wouldn’t have suited him but up against Group winners, he’s best watched here at best. Maxentius is another runner who finished behind Olympic Glory at Newmarket last time out. He is a distance winner on similar conditions and could run a good race with underfoot conditions to suit.

Operation Chariot disappointed on his last start in Group 2 company when trailing in 8th of 9 runners at Newmarket behind, you guessed it… Olympic Glory. Though a winner on soft, he found the heavy conditions too much and although he’s deserved another chance, he can be overlooked here.

Godolphin send in Listed winner Tha’ir, who bolted up at Ascot on his first start over 7 furlongs after another impressive run in maiden company under similar conditions. With a surprising entry in the 2013 Epsom Derby, he could run a massive race here before going onto greater things. Last up is Whipper’s Boy, who surprisingly loved the step up in trip to 7 furlongs when bolting up at Epsom on his last start. This on the other hand, looks much tougher and he faces a stiff task here.

Conclusion: A surprisingly small field line up to tackle this Group 2, and preference is for Godolphin second string THA’IR who bolted up in maiden company in similar conditions before taking the Chesham. It’s a big ask but he looks capable of running a big race with a talented jockey on board. Of the rest, Olympic Glory is the main danger.

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