| 6.8°C Belfast

Benbatl faces Reality check at Goodwood

 

Close

All eyes will be on Benbatl as the Group One winner returns to action in the Ladbrokes Celebration Mile, but Regal Reality can make his racing edge count at Goodwood.   (Stock photo)

All eyes will be on Benbatl as the Group One winner returns to action in the Ladbrokes Celebration Mile, but Regal Reality can make his racing edge count at Goodwood. (Stock photo)

All eyes will be on Benbatl as the Group One winner returns to action in the Ladbrokes Celebration Mile, but Regal Reality can make his racing edge count at Goodwood. (Stock photo)

All eyes will be on Benbatl as the Group One winner returns to action in the Ladbrokes Celebration Mile, but Regal Reality can make his racing edge count at Goodwood.

Benbatl is miles ahead of the field on the official ratings, with his mark of 125 ranking him among the best in the world, but he is returning from a lengthy lay-off here on ground that may not be ideal, so it perhaps makes sense to give him a swerve this time in favour of Sir Michael Stoute's charge.

Regal Reality experienced a bit of a spell in the doldrums after winning the Brigadier Gerard and finishing a fine third in the Eclipse last year, but a switch down to Group Three company at Salisbury saw him get back on track this month.

The application of a visor probably had plenty to do with Regal Reality's return to form - because with his mind fully focused on the task in hand, he ran out a thoroughly impressive three-and-a-half-length winner of the Sovereign Stakes.

A couple of his rivals that day did not show their best, so the value of the form may not be totally as it seems, but Regal Reality picked up in real style - and with his confidence replenished, he could well strike again.

Regal Reality sports the colours of Cheveley Park Stud, and Cabaletta can make it a double celebration for the owners with victory in the Ladbrokes March Stakes.

Roger Varian's charge has made significant strides this term, securing an all-important Listed win at Newbury in July before switching up from 12 furlongs to a mile and six at Goodwood last time.

Cabaletta did not help her cause too much that day by taking a keen hold in a three-runner affair - but even if she had settled better, it was unlikely she would have topped a really classy stayer in Enbihaar anyway.

That said, it was a seriously smart effort in second, and Cabaletta does not appear to have finished improving just yet.

Pomelo can build on an eye-catching debut in the Ladbrokes Prestige Stakes.

Bred to be a champion as a daughter of Dubawi out of Group One winner Emulous, Pomelo made a fine start for Ralph Beckett when hacking up by five lengths at Newbury last month.

One winner has emerged from those in behind, so the form may not be watertight, but Pomelo was a different class and can handle the move to Group Three company with aplomb.

Extra Elusive and Hollie Doyle seemed to strike up an immediate rapport when triumphing on their first trip out together earlier this month, and they can keep up the good work at Windsor.

Roger Charlton's charge thrived for more aggressive tactics, with Doyle riding a peach of a race from the front, setting a steady pace before winding it up and coming home comfortably clear in the Rose of Lancaster Stakes.

Extra Elusive must shoulder a 3lb penalty for that win, and his rivals will surely be alive to the threat of allowing him to stride on, but nevertheless he has plenty to recommend him in the Gallagher Group Winter Hill Stakes.

Sextant can see Stoute notch a second notable winner of the day, by stepping up on the fifth of his seasonal bow in the Gallagher Group August Stakes.

Listed honours are up for grabs at Newmarket in the Close Brother Hopeful Stakes, and Ventura Rebel may prove the solution to what looks a tricky puzzle.

A slow start cost him when stepped up to seven furlongs at York last month, but a repeat of his Commonwealth Cup third would put him firmly in the mix for this.

SELECTIONS

GOODWOOD: 1.15 Flotilla, 1.50 Pomelo, 2.25 Milltown Star, 3.00 Cabaletta, 3.35 REGAL REALITY (NAP), 4.10 Dance To Paris, 4.45 Junkanoo, 5.15 Porto Ferro.

NAVAN: 1.45 I Am Magnetic, 2.15 Soul Seeker, 2.50 Make A Challenge, 3.25 Sense Of Style, 4.00 Gold Allure, 4.35 Ambitious Approach, 5.05 Galileo Chrome, 5.35 Bright Flame.

NEWMARKET: 12.20 In Paradise, 12.55 Imperial Gloriana, 1.30 Shobiz, 2.05 Ventura Rebel, 2.45 Epic Endeavour, 3.20 Fox Vardy, 3.55 Domino Darling, 4.30 Rosa Gold.

REDCAR: 2.55 Firestick, 3.30 Millions, 4.05 Iva Reflection, 4.40 Viva Voce, 5.10 American Anthem, 5.45 Hachert, 6.15 Mosakhar, 6.45 Clan Jock, 7.15 Smeaton, 7.45 Red Tornado.

WEXFORD: 2.00 Clancypantz, 2.30 Westcoast Tiger, 3.05 Rebel Waltz, 3.40 Paloma Blue, 4.15 Ozzie's Way, 4.50 Rudy Catrail, 5.20 Back To Bataan.

WINDSOR: 12.35 Dewey Road, 1.05 Beauty Choice, 1.40 Sur Mer, 2.10 Kafee, 2.40 Sextant, 3.15 Extra Elusive, 3.50 Costello, 4.25 Maykir, 5.00 Winter Snowdrop.

DOUBLE: Regal Reality and Cabaletta (both Goodwood)

Belfast Telegraph