Stewards’ Cup conundrum is down to pace
4 August 2012
3.15pm Goodwood: Lay - Izzi Top
3.55pm Goodwood: Waffle each-way
Waffle has been beaten 23 times since winning his maiden but last time out at Ascot in the Wokingham Stakes he finally got his head in front. Of course, he was on the stands’ side and was pipped by Dandy Boy on the far side of the track but it shows that with Fran Berry on board the six-year-old can win the Stewards’ Cup.
Berry has ridden Waffle three times and has finished second twice, the other time when runner-up behind the smart Deacon Blues in the 2011 Wokingham.
As explained in Thursday’s blog, most of the pace horses have been draw low and with Berry holding up Waffle the race will be tailored perfectly to his abilities. With his running style it will almost certainly pay to back him in-running and perhaps the best way of all to get a profit out of David Barron's charge is to back him in the place market.
Of course in a race such as the Stewards’ Cup there are a whole host of dangers with Dungannon and Alben Star drawn high and Jamesie and Mac’s Power coming up the middle.
From backing to laying and I can’t help but feel that William Buick may have made the wrong choice in the Nassau Stakes.
The 24-year-old rider alluded to it in an interview with Racing UK radio this week, so it is obviously praying on his mind. He feels that at this point in time Izzi Top is the better filly but that his other option, The Fugue, could be better in the future.
Izzi Top may well have a victory at the highest level to her name, but the Pretty Polly at the Curragh was only a Group One in name.
The race was run in atrocious conditions and she only had to beat three rivals. No disrespect to Sapphire, I’m A Dreamer and Up but it was really only a Group 3.
Of course Izzi Top has a great attitude and is improving with every run but there is the sense that she is a false favourite.
Nahrain is a top-class operator and a proven Group One filly, having taken the Prix l’Opera last season and just failing to add to that when denied at the Breeders’ Cup. Her reappearance this season at Royal Ascot was over an inadequate trip and she had to shoulder a penalty.
As such it was a perfect preparation for this and alongside Was, the Oaks winner, and The Fugue, who should have won at Epsom, Izzi Top looks too short.
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