Timeform bring you their comprehensive runner-by-runner guide to the Sussex Stakes at Goodwood on Wednesday and pick out their 1-2-3.
"...thrived on his racing, impressing with how he put things to bed in the St James’s Palace..."
Timeform on Poetic Flare
15:35 Goodwood, Wednesday
Live on ITV
1. Century Dream (Simon & Ed Crisford/James Doyle)
Very smart performer who won the Celebration Mile over C&D last season. Has proved as good as ever this term, following up a listed win at Windsor with a narrow second to Tilsit in the Summer Mile at Ascot. Had no excuses under a well-judged front-running ride at Ascot, however, so hard to see him reversing the form, never mind threatening Poetic Flare.
2. Duhail (Andre Fabre, France/Jim Crowley)
Enjoyed a productive campaign last season, winning on three occasions, and has raised his game this term, notably landing the Group 2 Prix du Muguet at Saint-Cloud in May. Finished a creditable second in a pair of Group 3s subsequently and likely to come up short at this level.
3. Lope Y Fernandez (Aidan O'Brien, Ireland/Frankie Dettori)
Winless last season but was placed four times at the top level, including behind stablemate Order of Australia in the Breeders' Cup Mile. Made the most of a good opportunity on his return at Leopardstown and bounced back from a disappointing effort in the Lockinge to finish runner-up to Palace Pier in the Queen Anne Stakes. Should be suited by this course placing more emphasis on speed and entitled to respect if taking his chance.
4. Order of Australia (Aidan O'Brien, Ireland/Ryan Moore)
Tough prominent runner who is effective over a variety of trips and led home a fantastic 1-2-3 for his trainer with victory in the Breeders' Cup Mile at Keeneland last year. Easy to back and presumably needed his return behind Palace Pier in the Queen Anne but proved a different proposition when landing a 7f Group 2 at the Curragh a fortnight ago, readily making all. Bit more to find with the principals here but not hard to see him running a big race from the front.
5. Space Traveller (Richard Fahey/Danny Tudhope)
Developed into a smart performer in 2019, winning the Jersey Stakes and Boomerang Stakes, but made it to the course only once last season, finishing sixth in the Queen Anne. Showed he retains his ability when successful at listed level at York last month but beat only one home in the Summer Mile and is likely to struggle again in this company.
6. Tilsit (Charlie Hills/Kieran Shoemark)
Imposing colt who has come a long way in a short time, edged out in the Group 1 Prix d'Ispahan (strong form) in France before landing a gamble in the Summer Mile at Ascot earlier this month, seeing off Century Dream. Has some valuable course experience courtesy of his win in the Group 3 Thoroughbred Stakes over C&D at this meeting last year and he shouldn't be underestimated.
7. Battleground (Non Runner)
8. Chindit (Richard Hannon/Pat Dobbs)
Made it four wins from his first five starts when landing the Greenham Stakes at Newbury on his return but has just matched rather than improved on that form behind Poetic Flare in the Guineas and St James's Palace since, failing to settle on both occasions. Needs more.
9. Poetic Flare (Jim Bolger, Ireland/Kevin Manning)
Has thrived on his racing this year, emulating his sire Dawn Approach by winning the 2000 Guineas. Put a blip in the French 2000 Guineas behind him with a good second to stablemate Mac Swiney in the Irish 2000 Guineas before storming to victory in the St James's Palace. His winning margin of four-and-a-quarter lengths was the widest in that race in the last 30 years, and, looking a natural miler, he'll take all the beating.
10. Alcohol Free (Andrew Balding/Oisin Murphy)
Really likeable filly who has continued to progress this year, adding another Group 1 to her tally when seeing off Snow Lantern in the Coronation Stakes at Royal Ascot. That rival got her revenge in the Falmouth, though, despite Alcohol Free getting a cute ride from the front on the rail. This is even tougher but she should give it a good go.
11. Snow Lantern (Richard Hannon/Jamie Spencer)
Imposing filly who really impresses in the paddock and is coming into her own on the track now, turning the tables on Alcohol Free and Mother Earth with victory in the Falmouth at Newmarket earlier this month, picking up really well once in the clear. She has more to offer after just five runs and merits the utmost respect.
Timeform's Analyst Verdict
Poetic Flare has thrived on his racing, impressing with how he put things to bed in the St James’s Palace. On that form he’ll be hard to beat. The presence of Falmouth-winner Snow Lantern, diverted from the Nassau, adds some real spice to things. Tilsit, a winner over C&D at the meeting last year, looks the most interesting of the older brigade.
1. Poetic Flare
2. Snow Lantern