Glorious Goodwood 2022: Day 2 Spot Plays

July 26th, 2022

Day 2 at Glorious Goodwood features the biggest race of the carnival. The £1 million (about $1.2 million) Sussex Stakes (G1) is one of the key mile races in Europe, and is often one where the best three-year-old milers first meet the older horses.

The day also features the five-furlong Molecomb (G3) for two-year-olds, the seven-furlong Oak Tree (G3) for fillies and mares, and some competitive handicaps.

All seven races at Goodwood on Wednesday and Thursday are subject to the TwinSpires Rest of the World Bet Back offer, where those who opt in to races with six or more runners can get up to $10 back on their first straight win bet if the horse finishes second. So let’s look at them all!

Race 1, 8:50 a.m. ET: Free Bet Handicap, 1 1/2 miles, 3-year-olds

The strongest form here looks to be from the King George V Stakes at Royal Ascot, won narrowly but well by #1 Secret State. The form around that victory has been solid, and he looks very hard to topple here.

If you’re looking for one to make a race of it with him, try #5 Box To Box. He’s come back in great style since being gelded over winter, winning three of his four starts. He has the services of top jockey Jim Crowley and should be prominent most of the way.

#13 Soulcombe remains in good form and will be getting 19 pounds from Secret State, while others to consider include #8 Adjuvant, #9 Teumessias Fox, #10 Inverness, and #11 Mugader.

  • $10 win/$30 place: #5 Box To Box ($40)
  • $1 trifecta: 1, 5 with 1, 5 with 8, 9, 10, 11, 13 ($10)

Race 2, 9:25 a.m. ET: Oak Tree Stakes (G3), 7 furlongs, fillies and mares 3 years old and up

A nice field of fillies and mares face the starter here, and with the favorite at 9-2, it’s not easy to pick.

Favoritism may be contested between last year’s UAE 1,000 Guineas winner #8 Soft Whisper, who has successfully raced on turf and artificial tracks this season, and #12 Heredia, the Sandringham Handicap winner at Royal Ascot who lost her unbeaten record when third in the Coral Distaff at Sandown July 2. Of the two, I prefer Soft Whisper, especially at what now looks to be her preferred trip of seven furlongs.

One of the interesting factors will be whether trainer George Boughey starts #15 Oscula. She finished ahead of Heredia when second in the Coral Distaff and has since raced twice more, just missing on Saturday to Jumbly in the Valiant (G3) at Ascot. Given that she’s started four times since June 22, it wouldn’t surprise if she starts again here. If she’s recovered from Saturday’s run, she can figure strongly here.

  • $10 win/$30 place: #8 Soft Whisper ($40)

Race 3, 10:00 a.m. ET: Molecomb Stakes (G3), 5 furlongs, 2-year-olds

Much depends here on which Royal Ascot race you want to rely on: the Norfolk (G2), in which #7 Walbank finished second to The Ridler, or the Windsor Castle S., where #4 Rocket Rodney was second to Little Big Bear.

Though the Norfolk is the more prestigious, the form has worked out far better from the Windsor Castle; Little Big Bear followed up with a convincing success in the Anglesey (G3) in Ireland, while few of the Norfolk principals that have raced since have done much. Rocket Rodney himself followed his Ascot run by winning the Dragon S. at Sandown, and he also has winning form at Goodwood.

#2 Eddie’s Boy, #5 Studio City, and #8 Trillium all look capable of filling the minor placings.

  • $20 win: #4 Rocket Rodney ($20)
  • $2 trifecta: 4 with 2, 5, 7, 8 with 2, 5, 7, 8 ($24)

Race 4, 10:35 a.m. ET: Sussex Stakes (G1), 1 mile, 3-year-olds and up

If you think you can beat #1 Baaeed here, good on you. Few will agree with your confidence; the world’s highest-rated horse remains unbeaten in eight starts, and his victories this season in the Lockinge (G1) and the Queen Anne (G1) were extremely easy.

The defection of 2,000 Guineas (G1) winner Coroebus with injury robs the race of some interest, though his chances of beating the favorite looked low as it was. The classic generation is instead represented by dual juvenile Group 1 winner #6 Angel Bleu, who probably needs a downpour to figure, and #7 Modern Games, the literally unbackable winner of last year’s Breeders’ Cup Juvenile Turf (G1) who won the Poule d’Essai des Poulains (French 2,000 Guineas, G1) earlier this season. Modern Games should run well but doesn’t look a threat to Baaeed.

Last year’s winner #5 Alcohol Free comes into the race fresh from winning the six-furlong July Cup (G1) July 9, but she earlier was nearly six lengths behind Baaeed in the Lockinge. 2020 Breeders’ Cup Mile (G1) hero #4 Order of Australia reappears after winning the Minstrel (G2) for a second year in Ireland. The consistent #4 Chindit, twice beaten by Baaeed this year prior to winning the Summer Mile (G2) at Ascot July 9, and the Japanese runner #2 Bathrat Leon, the shock winner of the Godolphin Mile (G2) on dirt at Meydan in March, complete the field.

The best way to make some money here is probably a trifecta, provided something paying a little bit of money finds its way into second or third.

  • $2 trifecta: 1 with 2, 3, 7 with all ($30)

Race 5, 11:10 a.m. ET: EBF Fillies’ Handicap, 1 1/4 miles, fillies and mares 3 years old and up

This could be a race for veteran U.S. owner-breeder George Strawbridge, whose filly #3 Natasha lines up for the second time this season. After winning two of her first three starts, Natasha found the wet going and top company too much in the Prix Marcel Boussac (G1) last year. At her only start this term, she was a solid third in the Fillies’ Handicap at Newmarket July 15, and she should be better for the run. Frankie Dettori will ride.

#2 State Occasion followed an unlucky run for fourth at Royal Ascot with a solid second at Newbury July 16; the distance will be her biggest query. #4 Sea Speedwell also resumed nicely with a second-place finish at Leicester July 14, and is from the in-form William Haggas stable.

  • $10 win/$30 place: #3 Natasha

Race 6, 11:45 a.m. ET: Alice Keppel Fillies’ Conditions Stakes, 5 furlongs, 2-year-old fillies

Most of the money appears likely to be on #9 The Platinum Queen here, a debutante winner June 1 at Ripon who then bounced back from a failure in the Queen Mary (G2) at Royal Ascot with victory at York July 8. She put up a nice effort at York to win by nearly four lengths and should be well in this.

However, as mentioned above, the form from the Windsor Castle S. has been as good as that from any Royal Ascot juvenile race, and another graduate of that race is #8 Star of Lady M. She found a field headed by Little Big Bear and Rocket Rodney a little too quick, but she bounced back with a nice victory at Musselburgh. She looks worth supporting at a potentially nice price.

  • $10 win/$30 place: #8 Star of Lady M

Race 7, 12:20 a.m. ET: World Pool Handicap, 7 furlongs, 3-year-olds and up

Goodwood’s second day finishes off with a competitive seven-furlong handicap. The sentimental favorite will probably be #20 Stockpyle, a three-year-old half-brother to last Saturday’s King George VI and Queen Elizabeth (G1) winner Pyledriver. He’s shown decent speed and has won his last two, so he’s not a forlorn chance from down in the weights.

In an even field, I’m going for #18 Windseeker. He won his second juvenile start and then put up three nice efforts to begin this season over seven furlongs before coming up short at Salisbury June 22. Coming back to seven furlongs may be the key for him here.

  • $10 win/$20 place: #18 Windseeker