Glorious Goodwood - DAY TWO
It was Sussex Stakes day at the Qatar Goodwood Festival and the Â£1m race went to Lightning Spear.
Day two of Glorious is always special - for the Qatar Sussex Stakes is the biggest race of the week (see video of the Sussex above).
Here's how Wednesday's action unfolded...
11.55am - The going for the second day of the Qatar Goodwood Festival has changed to Good (from Good, Good to Soft in places in the straight) after a dry night.
1.20pm There's a good crowd in and it's slightly cooler today - pleasant but with some cloud cover. All focus is on the Sussex Stakes at 3.35pm but there's plenty of good racing on the rest of the card, which begins at 1.50pm.
2pm Lil Rockerfeller - who local race-goers may remember as a past winner of Fontwell's National Spirit Hurdle - is a very, very impressive winner of our opener, the Matchbook Betting Podcast Goodwood Handicap. See him canter home in the embedded tweet on this page.
The race is so long they start at the finish and do a complete loop of the track - it's two and a half miles - and with Silvestre de Sousa on board the Neil King-trained star, who went off 11/4 favourite, leads for most of the way before leaving his rivals standing on the run-in. Nice start to day two. Altaayil (28/1) was second.
And that's a winner for one of our tipsters, Alex Eade. See everyone else's below.
Trainer King said: "That's terrific - fantastic. I'm so thrilled with him and delighted for one of his owners, Andy Smith. He's had his heart set on winning this for the past year, but I was worried about the ground at this time of year, and he's missed two engagements because of quick ground already this season. He's been on the go a long time since finishing second at Sandown [over hurdles in late April], and I'm delighted we have pulled it off."
2.15pm - A little look ahead to the Sussex Stakes:
In today's feature race, the G1 Qatar Sussex Stakes (3.35pm), the John Gosden-trained Without Parole, the only G1 winner in the field following his success in the G1 St James's Palace Stakes at Royal Ascot, is a strong favourite with Matchbook, official betting partner of the Qatar Goodwood Festival at 19/10 (2.9).
However, Andrew Balding's Beat The Bank has attracted fervent each-way support into 28/5 (6.6) from 7/1 (8.0) with Matchbook. The four-year-old son of Paco Boy was a neck winner of the G2 Summer Mile at Ascot last time out. Aidan O'Brien saddles Gustav Klimt, who finished a half-length second to Without Parole at Royal Ascot and is 8/1 (9.0) from 10/1 (11.0).
2.30 There is a surprise in the Move Over To Matchbook Handicap as Angmering trainer William Knight sees Soto Sizzler win under Jimmy Quinn at 20/1 - beating long-time leader Corgi by a length. Knight said: "I'm delighted with Soto Sizzler. I loved this horse all along and he is only going to get better with time. This is his first win. I think he will get further next year. For the time being, we will probably stick at 12 furlongs, but I think he could get two miles next year.
"We might explore stepping him up in trip as we go up the handicap level. He is a proper horse and I think he could be a better than a handicapper. Soto Sizzler has always been the apple of my eye and it was no surprise that he ran a big race today. He was backward last year and we put him out on in the field in the middle of last summer and that was the making of him."
3pm The Markel Insurance Molecomb Stakes is won by Tom Queally - best remembered in these parts for his winning rides on Frankel - on board Rumble Inthejungle.
Queally said: "Rumble Inthejungle was excellent there. He has always been pretty good. He won first time and showed he was very forward. He did it really well today and has clearly stepped up his act since Ascot. He has always shown that he was pretty good and it was no exception today. We toyed with the idea of running him in the six-furlong race but this looked slightly easier and he is not short of gears. He is so straightforward, a child could ride him.
3.35pm The Sussex Stakes is never a dull race and it's certainly not this year as the perceived big two, Without Parole and Expert Eye, are beaten by Oisin Murphy on Lightning Spear - past winner of Goodwood's Celebration Mile. It's great news for the festival's sponsors, Qatar Racing, for they won the battling seven-year-old. Murphy and Lightning Spear get a tremendous ovation from a packed winner's enclosure in the bright sunshine.
Simcock said: "I'm delighted with Lightning Spear. He looked good today, quickened well and travelled well - he did everything properly. Oisin has grown up with the horse, he is a very confident jockey and he was very patient waiting for the gap today. Sheikh Fahad loves this horse and he will be absolutely delighted. Unfortunately, he can't be here today, but he'll be made up.
"Lightning Spear has done very little wrong apart from win a G1 up until now. He is a lovely horse to train and a lot of work goes into him. He has placed in six G1s I think and has never really let us down, though he was little bit inconsistent last season. To win a G1 is not easy and you have to accept it."
Murphy said: "The pace was slow, but he relaxed, and I got a little bit of cover off James Doyle [on runner-up Expert Eye]. I never ever get nervous before G1s - before the Derby and that I like making fun of the other jockeys - but I was nervous today and down at the start I was trying to hide it. I am over the moon - what a horse! And what a training performance. He deserves to win a major G1 and at seven years of age, it is outstanding."
4.10 Sensational stuff in the Victoria Racing Club Maiden Fillies' Stakes as Feels Glorious wins... at 125/1. It's ridden by Pat Cosgrave for trainer George Baker It's the highest-priced winner most can remember at Goodwood in recent times. The 4/1 favourite Alkahmah was beaten into second.
Initially Baker joked: "I really fancied her, and thought she was a bit of a certainty today," before admitting: "No, she's a lovely filly and she disappointed me at Kempton last time out when drawn wide and did a lot of running early and just ran out of puff. Today I felt that if she finished mid-division in a hot maiden like this I would be delighted, but I didn't just bring her here for the good of her health. It's only down the road for us [he trains near Chiddingfold] and we've always liked her, but she's just been bubbling under.
4.45 Tuesday's hero of the saddle, Andrea Atzeni, is back in the winner's enclosure after a nicely-timed victory on Caravela for popular trainer Mick Channon in the EBF Breeders' Series Fillies' Handicap.
Channon, registering his first victory at this year's Qatar Goodwood Festival, commented: "Caravela won nicely today. We thought she had a chance and we are delighted she has won. She is quite a valuable filly who is by Henrythenavigator and we think there is a bit more to come from her.
"She hasn't been the easiest horse to train and has had lots of niggles throughout her career. We've had to wait for her, but if they're good you don't mind waiting!"
5.55 Medahim wins the Goodwood Racehorse Owners Group Handicap - a second victory of the festival for the Richard Hannon-Ryan Moore-Al Shaqab Racing team.
Meanwhile there's news from ITV Racing about an exclusive they have in their coverage on Thursday...
As the Duke of Richmond opens his doors to host the Qatar Goodwood Festival of Racing, ITV Racing will broadcast the first interview he has ever given about his passion for the sport in the surroundings of his private residence. This will go out during the racing coverage on the afternoon of Thursday, August 2.
The Duke spoke candidly to Ed Chamberlin about his love for the sport and how Goodwood has such a long history with it (the first race was held under the third Duke of Richmond in 1801). He reminisced about the Queen coming to Goodwood House when he was a small boy and watching her arrive peering down the stairs. He also stressed how important he felt it was for the future of the sport for it to remain on terrestrial television.
Viewing figures for Day One of the Qatar Goodwood Racing Festival showed an average of 503,000, with a share of 9% and a peak for the Goodwood Cup of 644,000. This was 1% up on the average of 497,000 in 2017 (ITV) and 52% up the average of 330,000 in 2016 (C4).
That's that for day two - it's been memorable. Do join us again on Thursday.
Here are today's tips from our five-strong panel - all of whom got at least one winner on Tuesday, with Coral's Dave Stevens the star with four winners.
Good luck if you're having a bet today!
Re-live some of the drama and excitement of day one with the links below.