The famed Goodwood Racecourse is set to host the Qatar Goodwood Festival starting today.
The annual five-day Festival is in its fourth year since it was first sponsored by Qatar in 2015. This year’s edition is expected to be a huge success given the very careful preparations by the organisers.
The Festival will run till Saturday, August 4, 2018, with races on each day. Seven races will be run today with Qatar’s horses featuring in the cards, representing top stables including Al Shaqab, Umm Qarn, Al Shahania and Qatar Racing.
Qatar’s sponsorship has added plenty of momentum and media coverage, as it has led to an increase in the prize money, which in turn has encouraged many horse owners, trainers and jockeys to participate in the Festival every year.
Day 1 will see good Qatari presence at the races, which will also feature other well-known runners and connections. His Highness Sheikh Mohamed bin Khalifa al-Thani’s Tuff Rock will run in Race 1, Matchbook Betting Exchange Handicap (Class 2) (4yo+). David Simcock’s ward will be ridden by Qatar’s Champion Jockey Harry Bentley in the 2000m (1 mile 2 furlongs) race.
Qatar Racing’s Federal Law will be saddled by Archie Watson and ridden by Oisin Murphy in Race 2, the 1400m Qatar Vintage Stakes (Group 2) (Class 1) (2yo).
The third race in the card, 1400m Qatar Lennox Stakes (Group 2) (Class 1) (3yo+), will have 12 runners in the fray, including Al Shaqab’s Karar, who will be saddled by F-H Graffard and steered by Gregory Benoist.
Anne Cowley’s Al Rayyan Stakes winner Tip Two Win will be saddled by Roger Teal for the race, and will be helmed by David Robert. The three-year-old grey colt ran in Doha on more than one occasion. After his Al Rayyan Stakes victory in December last year, he was back for the Al Biddah Mile in February and was impressive in victory yet again.
Spirit Of Valor, owned by The Dereck Smith, Magnier, Michael Tabor and Stonestreet Stables, will be in the fray as well. The David O’Brien-schooled colt will be ridden by Ryan Moore.
Race 4, Qatar Goodwood Cup Stakes (Group 1) (British Champions Series) (Class 1) (3yo+) will be one of the longest races in the Festival at two miles. There will be seven runners, including the Queen-owned Call to Mind, who will be saddled by William Haggas and ridden by James Doyle.
BE Nielsen-owned Stradivarius will be there with trainer John Gosden and jockey Andrea Atzeni. Dereck Smith, Magnier, Michael Tabor, David O’Brien, Ryan Moore will cooperate again, but this time through Idaho.
Two-year-old maidens will compete in Race 5, the six-furlong Swiss Gin EBF Maiden Stakes (Class 2). Al Shaqab’s Watan will be there with trainer Richard Hannon and jockey Ryan Moore.
The sixth race in the card will be the five-furlong Chelsea Barracks Handicap Stakes (Class 2) (4yo+) .
The day will then conclude with the 1m Matchbook Time To Move Over Fillies’ Handicap (Class 3) (3yo+). Al Shaqab’s Labrega will compete in the race. The three-year-old bay filly will be saddled by Hugo Palmer and steered by Ryan Moore.

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