Enable, Stradivarius and Too Darn Hot all work on Warren Hill for John Gosden ahead of Group 1 races
Newmarket-based trainer John Gosden spent Monday morning on Warren Hill watching some of his leading lights stretch their legs ahead of upcoming big assignments.
The headline act was undoubtedly eight-time Group 1 winner Enable, who made an impressive seasonal debut earlier this month when landing the Coral-Eclipse at Sandown.
On Saturday the dual Prix de l’Arc de Triomphe heroine is the odds-on favourite to triumph in the King George VI & Queen Elizabeth QIPCO Stakes (3.40pm) – a race she won in 2017 during a glittering three-year-old campaign.
“Enable has been in good form since Sandown. I thought she ran a lovely race there. Frankie (Dettori, jockey) had her in the correct position and she won with a bit in hand,” said Gosden.
“She was coming off an eight-month break. She did not go for a racecourse gallop beforehand and did all of her work here in Newmarket. I would say it wasn’t until we got her on a gallop she likes, the round gallop on Limekilns, that she showed her zest and old spark.
“Prior to then, she was the like the heavyweight boxer trying to get ready for a championship fight - he has been off a number of months and running the roads and being in the gym is tough mentally.
“This is no penalty kick, absolutely not. It is a really exciting race with a deep field. Obviously, Enable and Crystal Ocean set the standard and then you have the three-year-olds getting the allowances.
“Enable is up for it, but I just don’t think it is the formality that is indicated. I see her more as even money shot against this field rather than the price she is.”
Champion stayer Stradivarius will take centre stage on Tuesday as he goes for a record third straight win in the £500,000 Group 1 Qatar Goodwood Cup on the opening day of the Qatar Goodwood Festival (3.35pm).
The five-year-old takes some good form into the contest, having already won the Group 2 Yorkshire Cup and the Group 1 Gold Cup at Royal Ascot this year.
“Stradivarius is a bit unusual for a stayer, but he is a real street fighter. He doesn’t do a lot when he hits the front and I felt he was playing with them a bit at Ascot,” said Gosden.
“We are hopeful the Stradivarius can win the Goodwood Cup again, but it is going to be a tough race and there will be a lot of people aiming to make it a hard race – it is going to be exciting.”
Wednesday, meanwhile, will see Europe’s unbeaten champion two-year-old of 2018, Too Darn Hot, line up in the £1m G1 Qatar Sussex Stakes (3.35pm) – fresh from a first win of the year in the top level Prix Jean Prat last time out.
“Too Darn Hot showed last time in the Jean Prat what he is good at; he is a very quick horse and stupidly we tried to stretch him out earlier in the year after an interrupted prep when he had to miss the Guineas,” admitted Gosden.
“I think we have got him back in the right place now and I was most impressed with the way he hit the line at Deauville over seven furlongs.”