Glorious Goodwood Tips: Rose to bloom on the Sussex Downs

Can TC score over the unique racecourse that is Goodwood?
Can TC score over the unique racecourse that is Goodwood?

The Channel 4 cameras are heading to Goodwood for day one of the Glorious meeting so Tony Calvin returns with his big-priced, big meeting bets...

"The betting seems to have forgotten that Van Percy was the ante-post favourite for the Northumberland Plate before an outside draw in 22 effectively ended his chances on the Thursday morning."

Back Van Percy @ 12.011/1 or better in the 15:40

Mark Johnston is hardly an old-school trainer - a few of his colleague's ears would have pricked up when reading in Sunday's Racing Post that "you can run the whole show from the office when things are going well" - but you can't argue with the results, and Glorious Goodwood is invariably a happy hunting ground for him.
 
Johnston is not everyone's tot of whisky - for a start, his horses are a touch too in-and-out for some punters - but I like people who front up and speak their mind, and the Scot certainly fits the bill on that score.
 
In fact, it was at this meeting a few years ago that he and I saw off everyone else in the bar of the Goodwood Hotel debating the merits of betting exchanges, and a read of Sunday's excellent interview with Peter Thomas - or indeed of his monthly newsletter the Kingsley Klarion - show that his forthright views are by no means diminishing.
 
And forthright is a reasonable description of how his horses tend to be ridden - direct and leading from the front - and Salutation looks a very decent bet at odds of 12.011/1 to get him off to a flier in the opener at Goodwood at 13:55.
 
Now, in the unlikely event that the course is hit with a lot of rain, then he could be a non-runner. Indeed, he was taken out at Ascot on Friday after the thunderstorm struck there.
 
But if he takes his chance, then I make him more of a single-figure poke in this - and he was a very well-backed 7-2 favourite at Ascot before the rain came.
 
And I can see why. Okay, he is not ideally drawn in 16 here, but that was the case over 1m4f at Royal Ascot last time, where a lot of use was made of him early to get across from 11 and lead the field there, and hopefully he can do the same here.
 
Given that early move, his second to the highly-regarded Arab Spring is all the meritorious and I don't think it will be the 3lb higher mark stopping him one going one better here.
 
The draw may do for him - though high-drawn horses have actually done pretty well in this in recent seasons - but if he does get a handy pitch early doors, then I think he will take a lot of beating.
 
Forcing tactics over 1m2f on decent ground could be ideal - he obviously gets 1m4f really well so a strongly-run race in a big field over this trip should be fine - and he ran a cracker when second to Pether's Moon in the 1m4f handicap at this meeting last year.
 
So take the 11-1+, and don't argue.
 
The Molecomb Stakes at 14:30 is a tricky one, but I wouldn't be in any rush to take the 1.8810/11 about Beacon.
 
In fact, I am going to take a flier and tip the horse who finished a 10 length last of four to him at Sandown last time. 
 
Back Union Rose at odds of 26.025/1 or better.
 
That clearly wasn't his true running and if you forgive him that dismal effort - and it does take some forgiving, I admit - then he has a very fair shout on the form of his Windsor Castle second at Royal Ascot, where Cotai Glory, second favourite here, was over two lengths behind him in sixth.
 
And he is a horse who wouldn't be inconvenienced if Goodwood did get any appreciable rain.
 
Es Que Love looks far too big at odds of 14.013/1 and bigger in the Lennox Stakes at 15:05.
 
This horse has run some crackers over sprint trips this season, none more so than when third to Music Master at Newbury last time over 6f.
 
But he gets 7f ok. Indeed, Mark Johnston raced him a few times over 1m when he trained him last season and he actually ran a cracker when sixth in the Betfred Mile at this meeting last year. So a return to 7f is workable, and this race looks very winnable. I can see him travelling strongly into this race and pouncing late.
 
Likely favourite Toormore is said to be in great shape at home but has something to prove after slightly disappointing recent performances, albeit in a much better grade than this. July Cup third Gregorian has run badly on his two starts at this track, and Richard Fahey is now reaching for the visor for Garswood. To nick a line from my good friend Mark "The Couch" Winstanley, he has now been tried in more headgear than Hannibal Lector, and that doesn't encourage me.
 
No, this is winnable and Es Que Love is no 14.013/1 chance.
 
My Channel 4 brief leaves me with one more to race to ponder over. I may go outside of my remit later in the week if I find bets hard to find on the terrestrial races, but no need on Tuesday as I think Van Percy is another who looks big at 12.011/1 in the 15:40.
 
I must admit that I am scared of Havana Cooler and Dashing Star at the front of the market - I wouldn't put anyone off backing either of them - but the betting seems to have forgotten that Van Percy was the ante-post favourite for the Northumberland Plate before an outside draw in 22 effectively ended his chances on the Thursday morning.
 
So I would forgive him that run and concentrate on his easy win at Newmarket in May, on which he remains well-treated on just a 6lb higher mark.
 
He ran well when fourth in the 1m4f handicap here last year from the widest stall, and this track gives you more time to work yourself into the race than Newcastle. And he is a hold-up horse anyway, so would be dropped in regardless, hence a draw in 14 doesn't overly-concern me.


Recommended Bets 
Back Salutation @ 12.011/1 or better in the 13:55 
Back Union Rose @ 26.025/1 or better in the 14:30 
Back Es Que Love @ 14.013/1 or better in the 15:05 
Back Van Percy @ 12.011/1 or better in the 15:40


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