Party time at Galway

Goodwood & Galway selections Thursday 3rd August

The two big Festival meetings reach the halfway stage on Thursday. At Goodwood we perhaps have the lowest profile day of the week but a couple of 3yo handicaps catch the eye. At Galway the feature event is the Galway Hurdle which looks a particularly classy version this time.

Goodwood 1.50: Royal Rhyme, Perfuse & Entrancement

A big field stand their ground for the opener despite the torrent of rain yesterday. I have selected three horses who will all handle the going.

ROYAL RHYME was an impressive winner of a soft ground handicap at Newmarket on Guineas weekend, storming home 5l clear of Rathgar. He had already won on racecourse debut on soft at Thirsk so those are clearly his preferred conditions.

The ground was much quicker when he disappointed in the London Gold Cup at Newbury just two weeks later, but I expect a much bolder show with the cut in the ground back in his favour. He has also had the chance to be freshened up since those two quick outings.

PERFUSE ran a cracker to finish fifth at the Royal meeting considering he chased a ridiculously strong early pace throughout. That race was over 12f on fast ground, but a return to 10f would not go amiss today considering he has plenty of boot early on.

Considering he ran well in testing conditions on his first two starts, this return to soft will not inconvenience him either. He was a 7l winner on heavy ground at Nottingham in May and the second home won well next time out so that form has worked out fine. He promises to be a deal better than his current rating of 94.

At huge odds ENTRANCEMENT offers value given his obvious preference for soft ground. He ploughed through heavy conditions to win over course and distance in May, winning by over 6l. He chased home La Isla Mujeres next time at Salisbury and the winner was only narrowly defeated here yesterday. He is 3lbs out of the handicap and might just lack the class to win here, but give conditions he would still make a tidy profit with a placed effort.

Goodwood 4.45: Roarin Success

Another huge field for this slightly lesser grade mile handicap.

ROARIN SUCCESS looked in trouble at halfway on his last start at Ascot, but one she got going 2f out there was only ever going to be one winner and she cleared away from them in the closing stages. She will have benefited greatly from the experience of that first run in a handicap and a 5lb extra mark is not excessive.

There was some give in the ground that day, just as there was when she ran with real promise on her racecourse debut at Salisbury last autumn. She remains thoroughly unexposed after only four starts and whilst the ground is likely to be a bit softer again today, it should at least be a drying day so conditions ought not to be too different from Ascot.

Galway 5.05: Filey Bay & Party Central

A cracking line up for the big hurdle race of the week and I have two against the field.

JP McManus has plenty in here but I prefer FILEY BAY who has improved out of all recognition since joining Emmet Mullins. Having won on his first two starts for the yard in lesser races, he ran two crackers in arguably the two biggest 2m handicaps in England, the Betfair at Newbury and the County at Cheltenham.

The second run was especially impressive as it showed he could cope with an undulating track and slower ground. However conditions are largely drying at Galway so that should not be an issue and he is well used now to racing in big fields. He warmed up for this with a run on the flat at Roscommon and I am not concerned that he was a well beaten warm favourite on the day as the exercise was all about getting him spot on for today.

PARTY CENTRAL is a mare that greatly interests me. Injury meant we did not see her on track over hurdles last season, but her form the previous term made her look an ideal type for this race.

A real strong traveller she won the big mares handicap at the Dublin Racing Festival having cruised to the lead turning for home. She than landed the opening contest of the 2022 Punchestown Festival, both races coming on decent ground.

A couple of runs, both wins will have blown away the cobwebs and she impressively disposed of Jesse Evans at Bellewstown last time out. Admittedly she was soundly beaten at Killarney in her one hurdles outing in May, but that could have been some rustiness and I think a bigger field and stronger gallop will suit her far better today.

Recommended bets:

1pt each-way- Royal Rhyme – 1.50 Goodwood – 12/1 Bet365, Coral, Ladbrokes (1/5 odds 1st 5)

1pt win – Perfuse – 1.50 Goodwood – 9/4 general

0.5pts each-way – Entrancement – 1.50 Goodwood – 25/1 Bet365, Coral, Ladbrokes (1/5 odds 1st 5)

1pt each-way – Roarin Success – 4.45 Goodwood – 15/2 Paddy Power (1/5 odds 1st 5)

1pt each-way – Filey Bay – 5.05 Galway – 15/2 William Hill (1/5 odds 1st 6)

1pt each-way – Party Central – 5.05 Galway – 16/1 Paddy Power (1/5 odds 1st 6)

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