Sea Shanty can get Glorious Goodwood off to a fantastic start for trainer Richard Hannon and jockey Richard Hughes by winning the bet365.com Stakes on Tuesday.
Hannon jnr has a hard act to follow at the Sussex venue as his old man, Richard, dominated on the Downs before passing the baton on to his son this season.
Hughes has been top jockey at the meeting for the last four years and took this race 12 months ago with Viewpoint, who runs again, but there is no doubting Sea Shanty is the first string.
Owned by The Queen, the four-year-old has improved in leaps and bounds this season, winning at Kempton and Sandown before going close in the Royal Hunt Cup.
Carrying a 5lb penalty at the Royal meeting, he finished fourth behind Field Of Dream, just four days after winning at Sandown so the effort can be upgraded.
Running off the same mark, Sea Shanty will be very hard to beat in a race that does not look as deep as the Ascot cavalry charge.
The feature race of the opening day is the bet365 Lennox Stakes, in which Hannon and Hughes have the favourite, Toormore.
While he was champion juvenile in Europe last year, partly on the basis of his win at this meeting in the Vintage Stakes, he has not looked as dominant as a three-year-old, despite claiming the Craven on his reappearance.
To that end, It may be worth chancing that last year’s winner, Garswood, can bounce back to his best for Richard Fahey.
He has never quite fulfilled Fahey’s hopes as the trainer talked of him in Group One terms, but he obviously goes well at the track and anything Ryan Moore rides this week must have a chance as he could win on a Shetland pony at present.
It is, however, hard not to see Hannon and Hughes winning the bet365 Molecomb Stakes with Beacon.
An expensive failure on his debut at Doncaster, Beacon has won his next three in straightforward style, including a four-length stroll at Listed level most recently at Sandown.
There appears to be nothing else in the race with a profile as progressive as his.
Luca Cumani’s Havana Cooler should be suited by the step up in trip for the bet365 Summer Stakes.
Still lightly raced, he was staying on nicely at the end of the Old Newton Cup, when beaten just over two lengths, and this can put him spot-on for the Ebor.
Three-year-olds have a decent record in the bet365 Stakes and it appears significant Hugo Palmer has booked Moore for Extremity.
Palmer won the race last year with the four-year-old Ascription.
Mark Johnston’s Special Fighter looks sure to be suited by the step back up to a mile and a half in the Beverley Middle Distance Series Handicap on the Westwood.
Kieren Fallon will not be used to not being at the big Goodwood meeting but he can gain small compensation by partnering Runner Runner to victory in the Grange Freehouse At Ormesby Maiden Auction Stakes at Yarmouth.
At Perth, Peter Bowen’s Ballybough Gorta can follow up a recent win in the Orion Group Handicap Chase, while the Venetia Williams-trained Monetary Fund looks the one in the Midshire Communications Beginners’ Chase at Worcester.
Beverley: 2.20 Rainford Glory, 2.50 Manshaa, 3.25 Ruby Rose, 4.00 Dodina, 4.35 Eeny Mac, 5.10 Special Fighter, 5.45 Edgware Road.
Goodwood: 1.55 SEA SHANTY (NAP), 2.30 Beacon, 3.05 Garswood, 3.40 Havana Cooler, 4.15 Acaster Malbis, 4.50 Extremity, 5.20 Daylight.
Perth: 6.00 Shantou Tiger, 6.30 Midnight Game, 7.00 Ultra Light, 7.35 Bellgrove, 8.05 Ballybough Gorta, 8.35 Politeness, 9.05 Rev Up Ruby.
Worcester: 5.50 Cara Court, 6.20 Monetary Fund, 6.50 Lucky Landing, 7.20 Phase Shift, 7.50 Breaking The Bank, 8.20 Questioning, 8.50 Full Throttle.
Yarmouth: 2.10 Gift Of Silence, 2.40 Runner Runner, 3.15 Secret Asset, 3.50 Mr Win, 4.25 Nabeel, 5.00 Logans Lad, 5.30 Lucky Diva.
Double: Sea Shanty and Beacon.