Stable-mates Shutter Speed and So Mi Dar have had differing fortunes in 2017, but John Gosden is confident both will give good accounts of themselves during today’s Qatar Nassau Stakes at Goodwood (3.35pm).
While she finished a disappointing fourth at June’s French Oaks, Shutter Speed was victorious in her two previous outings this season — including a verdict over Gosden’s dual Oaks hero and last weekend’s King George VI & Queen Elizabeth Stakes winner Enable.
In contrast, four-year-old So Mi Dar has been sidelined by muscle enzyme issues which have prevented her from building on 2016’s impressive triumphs at Epsom, York and Yarmouth.
The Dubawi filly had been due to return to action in the Middleton Stakes at York in May, but Gosden pulled the plug on that assignment, opting instead to wait for this afternoon’s Group 1 race on the Sussex Downs.
“It has been a long road back for So Mi Dar,” said Clarehaven Stables-based Gosden, who also confirmed that both his horses would run unless the forecast rain was excessive.
“She has had to deal with muscle enzyme problems, which is sort of like cramps.
“But she seems fine now and I have been really pleased with her recent work.
“It is going to be in a high class race with fabulous fillies, but she belongs in that company.”
As for Shutter Speed, who will have Pat Smullen in the saddle after Frankie Dettori opted to partner So Mi Dar, Gosden is not expecting the events at Chantilly to have a negative impact.
“Shutter Speed had a great season until the French Oaks,” he added.
“It was just not to be in Chantilly and we were not helped by the fact our jockey (Dettori) had a serious shoulder injury. The track at Goodwood will suit her more, so the hope is that she — along with So Mi Dar — will both go well.”
Gosden has enjoyed recent success in the race, with The Fugue, Winsili and Sultanina giving him consecutive wins between 2012 and 2014. His first of fourth victories came courtesy of Ryafan in 1997.
n Gosden’s fellow Newmarket trainer, Sir Michael Stoute, will be seeking to match Sir Henry Cecil’s record of eight winners in the race with Breeders’ Cup winner Queen’s Trust, who finished 2nd in 2016.