Glorious Goodwood Betting Tips – 30th July to 3rd August 2019

View Behind Horse Racing FieldNext stop Sussex on the racing festival calendar, and a cracking stop it is too, as Goodwood plays host to what is by some way its biggest meeting of the year. Officially titled the Qatar Goodwood Festival in honour of the substantial backing it receives from our friends on the gulf, the meeting will nevertheless forever be referred to as “Glorious Goodwood” by racing fans everywhere.

Stellar prize money, no little prestige, and often weather which lives up to the glorious title of the meeting make this one of the most popular racing events of the season. Held in late July/early August each year, the festival offers 35 races in all, including 13 Group level events, in addition to some of the best handicapping action of the season.

About Glorious Goodwood

South Downs countryside near Goodwood

King Edward VII once referred to Glorious Goodwood as ‘a garden party with racing tacked on’, which goes some way to explaining the popularity of the Goodwood Festival. Another reason is that Goodwood Racecourse is in one of the most picturesque settings in the sport, sat as it is in the middle of the South Downs National Park. The views all around are fairly spectacular, but that alone wouldn’t be enough if there wasn’t also some spectacular racing attached to it.

Things might have been so different had the Third Duke of Richmond not decided to host racing at the estate in 1802, ostensibly as a form of entertainment for his officers in the Sussex Militia. The Harroway, as that initial two-day meeting was known, was such a success that it was decided that it would be extended to three days the following year and would take place under Jockey Club rules. It was the post-war crowd that really saw Goodwood begin to grow in popularity though, with more than fifty thousand racegoers heading to the racecourse on just one day in 1953.

Glorious Goodwood Race List

Tatler once named Goodwood ‘the upper-class Disneyland’, with the fact that it concludes the British social season being the primary reason for that. Those in the right social circles will have attended the Chelsea Flower Show, roared on the horses at Royal Ascot and eaten strawberries and cream at Wimbledon before heading to Goodwood, perhaps fitting some rowing at Henley in there too if time allowed.

Head to Royal Ascot and you’ll see the majority of men sporting a top hat and tails, but things are done differently at Goodwood. In 1906 the then-king Edward VII turned up with a linen suit on and a Panama hat on its head, with that being the unofficial outfit of Goodwood ever since. ‘Relaxed yet elegant’ are the watchwords for racegoers, with even the Queen tending to wear something a little more suitable for the summer months when she has attended.

It would all be irrelevant if the racing wasn’t up-to-scratch, of course, and there are thirty-five races spread over five days to keep you entertained. The meeting usually gets underway on a Tuesday and reaches its conclusion on the Saturday, so there are plenty of chances for you to excited in amongst all of that. Here’s how the race cards look for the 2019 iteration of the Festival:

RacePrize MoneyAges
Day One
Unibet Handicap £75,000 4 Years Old +
Vintage Stakes £200,000 2 Years Old
Lennox Stakes £312,000 3 Years Old +
Goodwood Cup £500,000 3 Year Old +
EBF Maiden Stakes £25,000 2 Years Old
Chelsea Barracks Handicap £30,000 4 Years Old +
Fillies' Handicap £25,000 3 Year Old +
Day Two
Goodwood Handicap £50,000 3 Years Old +
Unibet Handicap £75,000 3 Years Old
Molecomb Stakes £75,000 2 Years Old
Sussex Stakes £1,059,250 3 Year Old +
Fillies' Conditions Stakes £50,000 2 Years Old
Premier Fillies' Handicap £30,000 3 Years Old +
New & Lingwood Handicap £25,000 3 Years Old +
Day Three
Unibet Handicap £75,000 3 Years Old
Richmond Stakes £200,000 2 Years Old
Gordon Stakes £175,000 3 Years Old
Nassau Stakes £600,000 3 Year Old +
Telegraph Nursery £25,000 2 Years Old
Maiden Fillies' Stakes £25,000 2 Years Old
Tatler Handicap £25,000 3 Years Old
Day Four
Oak Tree Stakes £80,000 3 Years Old +
Thoroughbred Stakes £100,000 3 Years Old
Golden Mile Handicap £150,000 3 Years Old +
King George Stakes £312,000 3 Year Old +
Unibet Nursery £25,000 2 Years Old
Queen's Plate Glorious Stakes £100,000 4 Years Old +
TDN Australia Handicap £25,000 3 Years Old
Day Five
Stewards' Sprint Handicap £75,000 3 Years Old +
Summer Handicap £100,000 3 Years Old +
Lillie Langtry Stakes £312,000 3 Years Old + Fillies & Mares
Stewards Cup £250,000 3 Year Old +
Stallions Maiden Stakes £30,000 2 Years Old
Qatar Handicap £30,000 3 Years Old
Apprentice Handicap £25,000 3 Years Old +

The Major Races in Detail

As you can see from each of the day’s race cards, there are countless top-class races throughout the five days of the Festival. Of course, as with any race meeting there are some offerings that are more ‘filler’ than ‘killer’, but generally speaking every day has a couple of excellent races that you might want to know a little bit more about.

We’ve chosen a few races from each day to fill you in on, so keep reading to get a real sense of what the Qatar Goodwood Festival, to give it its proper name, has to offer to racegoers.

Molecomb Stakes

When it was first run in 1829 this was originally a race for two-year-olds of either sex, being restricted to fillies in 1932. Colts and geldings were allowed to take part again in 1981 and it has remained that way ever since.

Run over a distance of five furlongs, there’s a weight of nine stone one pound in place with a three pound allowance for fillies. Winners of Group 1 and Group 2 races get a penalty of five pounds, with Group 3 race winners having a three pound penalty applied. The race’s name comes from the house Molecomb that was built on the Goodwood Estate for Lady Sarah Lennox by her brother the third Duke of Richmond.

Lennox Stakes

The Duke of Richmond, who owns the Goodwood Estate, is also the Duke of Lennox and it is that title that this race is named after. One of the youngest races on the race card, it was inaugurated in 2000 when it replaced the Beeswing Stakes that had been discontinued at Newcastle. It’s raced right-handed over seven furlongs.

It might be young but it’s already had a somewhat turbulent existence, starting life as a Group 3 race before becoming a Group 2 offering three years later. Between 2004 and 2010 it was known as the Betfair Cup because of its sponsorship by the betting company of the same name. Open to horses aged three and over, here’s the weight information that you’ll want to know:

  • 3-year-olds: 8 stone 10 pounds
  • 4-year-olds and over: 9 stone 3 pounds
  • A 3 pounds allowance is given to fillies and mares
  • Winners of Group 1 races are given a 5 pound penalty
  • Winners of Group 2 races are given a 3 pound penalty

Vintage Stakes

Vintage is a word that suggests age, but the race was first staged in 1975 as a Listed offering. It became a Group 3 offering eleven years later and was promoted to Group 2 in 2003. The race has enjoyed numerous sponsors over the years, with most being champagne manufacturers like Lanson and Veuve Clicquot.

Run right-handed and open to two-year-olds, the weight is nine stone one pound and fillies are given a three pound allowance. There’s also a three pound penalty that winners of Group 1 and Group 2 races have to contend with. This is the race to watch if you’re hoping for tips about the following season’s Classics, with a number of winners going on to do well in them. Galileo Gold, for example, won this ahead of victory in the 2016 2,000 Guineas.

Gordon Stakes

Taking place over one mile, three furlongs and two hundred and eighteen yards, the Gordon Stakes is open to three-year-olds and is run right-handed. The following weight information is in place:

  • 9 stone 1 pound
  • Fillies receive a 3 pound allowance
  • Group 1 winners take a 7 pound penalty
  • Group 2 winners take a 5 pound penalty
  • Group 3 winners take a 3 pound penalty

First run in 1902, the Gordon Stakes is named in honour of the Duke of Gordon, which is yet another of the Duke of Richmond’s titles. The restriction to three-year-olds was introduced in 1903 and the race serves as something of an indicator for how competitors will do in the St Leger Stakes.

Sussex Stakes

The Sussex Stakes has enjoyed something of a chequered history, having been run for the first time in 1841 but not contested on twenty-five occasions after that. Originally it was a six furlong event specifically for two-year-olds, being extended to one mile and moved to being for three-year-olds in 1878. Four-year-olds could take part from 1960 and it was been open to horses of any age of three or above since 1975.

Run right-handed, this race has a weight of nine stone one pound for three-year-olds and nine stone eight pounds for horses aged four and over, with a three pound allowance given to fillies and mares. It offered a purse of £1 million in 2018 and just shy of £600,000 of that went to the winner. The most successful horse in the race’s history is Frankel, who won back-to-back victories in 2011 and 2012.

Richmond Stakes

Established in 1877, this race is titled in honour of the Duke of Richmond. Originally open to horses of any gender, the Richmond Stakes was limited to male horses in 1989. It has enjoyed a number of high-profile sponsors over the years, including the drinks firm Diageo and the car manufacturer Audi. The weight is nine stone and winners of Group 1 and Group 2 races receive a three pound penalty.

Run over six furlongs, the Richmond Stakes is a race you might want to watch for some clues about the following season’s Classics. Whilst it’s not common for horses to win this and one of the Classics the next year, with Palestine being the last to do so when it won this and then the 2,000 Guineas in 1950, horses that do well often impress in the Classics when given a chance.

Lillie Langtry Stakes

This race was established in 2003 and was known as the Gladness Stakes until it was renamed after actress and mistress of King Edward VII Lillie Langtry in 2004. That was also when it received Group 3 status, becoming a Group 2 offering in 2018. It is a race that has undergone a number of name changes over the years, predominantly because of sponsorship. It was the Moët Hennessy Fillies' Stakes between 2008 and 2010, for example, when sponsored by the champagne producer.

Run over one mile and six furlongs, this is a race for fillies and mares aged three and over with the following weight information:

  • 3-year-olds: 8 stone 9 pounds
  • 4-year-olds and over: 9 stone 6 pounds
  • Group 1 winners receive a penalty of 5 pounds
  • Group 2 winners receive a penalty of 3 pounds

Goodwood Cup

There was a Goodwood Cup run in 1808, with Bucephalus winning it three times and seeing the silver cup trophy awarded to his owner permanently. As a result a new race was inaugurated in 1812 and contested over three miles. It was cut to two miles and five furlongs and then dropped to its current length of two miles in 1991. Open to three-year-olds and over, the weight is eight stone eight pounds or nine stone nine pounds for horses aged four and up. Fillies and mares get a three pound allowance.

The race was a favourite of horses bred abroad during the nineteenth century, particularly horses from France such as Jouvence and Monarque. When the racing grading system was introduced in 1971 this was a Group 2 race, dropping to Group 3 in 1985 before regaining Group 2 status ten years later. The race became a Group 1 offering in 2017 and is part of the Stayers’ Triple Crown, coming after the Gold Cup at Ascot and before the Doncaster Cup.

Oak Tree Stakes

First run in 1980, the Oak Tree Stakes was then known as the New Stand Stakes. It became the Wedding Day Stakes in 1981 as it occurred on the same day as the wedding of Prince Charles and Diana, gaining its current name the following year. It’s in honour of the relationship between the racecourse and the Oak Tree Racing Association of California.

Run over seven furlongs, it was classed as a Listed race for a time but gained Group 3 status in 2004. Open to fillies and mares aged three and up, the following weight information is applicable:

  • 3-year-olds: 8 stone 11 pounds
  • 4-year-olds and up: 9 stone 3 pounds
  • Group 1 winners receive a 7 pound penalty
  • Group 2 winners receive a 5 pound penalty

King George Stakes

This five furlong race is run on the straight track and was established in 1911. Founded in honour of King George V’s coronation, it was a Group 3 race when the system of grading was introduced in 1971. It gained Group 2 status in 2010 and races that do well in it often end up being competitive in the Nunthorpe Stakes.

Open to horses aged three and over, here’s the relevant weight information:

  • 3-year-olds: 8 stone 13 pounds
  • 4-year-olds and over: 9 stone 2 pounds
  • Fillies and mares receive a 3 pound allowance
  • Group 1 race winners get given a 5 pound penalty
  • Group 2 race winners get given a 3 pound penalty

Thoroughbred Stakes

Known for a time as the Surplice Stakes and originally ungraded, this race gained its current name and became a Listed offering in 1998. It has enjoyed numerous sponsors over the years, often resulting in it getting a different name accordingly, becoming a Group 3 race in 2012.

The race is run right-handed over one mile and is for three-year-olds, though winners of Group 1 races are excluded from qualification. The weight is nine stone one pound, with a three pound allowance for fillies, a seven pound penalty for Group 2 race winners and a four pound penalty for winners of Group 3 races.

Glorious Stakes

Known as the Alycidon Stakes when it was inaugurated in 1979, this was originally for horses aged three and over and was a conditions race. It was given Listed status in 1985 two years later it became the Alycidon Glorious Stakes, losing the moniker of the racehorse who won the 1949 Goodwood Cup in 1989 to gain its present title.

The race was run as a limited handicap when it the entry-level age of horse for it became four in 1993, reverting back to a conditions race in 2003 and gaining Group 3 status four years later. Run over one mile, three furlongs and two hundred and eighteen yards, the weight is nine stone one pound with a three pound allowance for fillies and mares. Horses that have won Group 1 races get a seven pound penalty, Group 2 winners get five pounds and there’s a three pound penalty for Group 3 winners.

Stewards’ Cup

This race was borne out of the fact that the senior steward at Goodwood selected a race every year throughout the 1930s and presented a cup to the winner. In 1839 Lord George Bentinck came up with the idea of having a specific race that would take the honour of the cup and it was raced for the first time the following year.

Taking place over six furlongs and open to horses aged three and over, the Stewards’ Cup was originally held on the first day of the Festival, being moved to the final day in 1993. It has enjoyed a number of sponsorships over the years, starting with Spillers in 1970. The handicap race has been won more than once by several different horses, with Marvel in 1890 and 1892 the first to achieve the feat.

Nassau Stakes

Open to fillies and mares that are three or over, this race is run right-handed and was established in 1840. It gets its name from the friendship between the fifth Duke of Richmond and the House of Orange Nassau and the race was originally only for three-year-old fillies. It was opened up to older horses in 1975 and promoted from a Group 2 to a Group 1 offering in 1999.

Initially the race was run over a mile, being extended to one and a half miles in 1900 before being shortened down to the one mile, one furlong and one hundred and ninety-seven yards of its current running eleven years later. The most successful horse to run the race is Midday, who won it three times in a row between 2009 and 2011. Weight-wise, it’s eight stone thirteen pounds for three-year-olds and nine stone seven pounds for horses aged four and over.