Soft Ground A Sure Sign For Solow
Wednesday’s Group 1 Sussex Stakes (3.10) revolves around one horse, courtesy of the French raider, Solow (4/7).
Solo Show For Solow?
Freddie Head’s 5yo arrives having won the Group 1 Queen Anne Stakes (1m, good) where he was a convincing winner in having Ballydoyle’s Cougar Mountain (12/1) over 1l back in third.
Solow took his career record to an impressive tally of 10-15 that day, and while he has plenty of speed, the fact he is a 1m4f winner last season means he can use that stamina in what could be testing conditions (ground currently soft).
The likely mud that awaits the field will be no problem for Solow either, as he has plenty of winning form throughout Europe on soft ground, and he will take all the beating.
It’s also worth noting that victory at Ascot last time proved a good sign in the Sussex down the years…
Of the last 10 Sussex winners…
10 returned 8/1 or shorter
9 were officially rated 115+
9 won over 1m
9 ran in a Group 1 last time
8 ran at Ascot last time
7 were 3yo’s
7 won last time out
A O’Brien won it twice, along with the Hannons
Thunder To Repeat Lockinge Win?
While 3yo’s won seven of the last 10 Sussex Stakes, Richard Hannon’s 4yo, Night Of Thunder, cannot be dismissed at odds of 11/2 – after all, he won the Group 1 Lockinge only two outings ago, prior to being beaten around 5l by Solow at Ascot last month.
A winner at this track on his juvenile debut, Night Of Thunder has been there and done it, and may yet have one more big race in him with the ground unlikely to be firm, which may have been against him at Ascot.
Speedy Arod To Lead Again?
Peter Chapple-Hyam’s 4yo, Arod, has to enter calculations having won a Group 3 at Epsom before Group 1 success at Ascot last month – both at 1m. The fact he made all on both times shows he has pace, which could be an asset around this sharp 1m.
With Wednesday’s field attracting eight runners, there will be plenty of each-way value on offer, including Roger Varian’s 3yo, Belardo (8/1) – a Group 1 winning juvenile in the mud, who showed he retained his ability when beaten under 2l by Gleneagles in the Irish 2,000 Guineas (1m, yielding).
Just done for stamina that day, it’s likely this sharper mile will suit Belardo, and he has to be considered as place material at least.
Can Cougar Catch Solow?
But what of Aidan O’Brien’s Cougar Mountain who was beaten just over 1l by Solow at Ascot? Well, he goes back to a mile having failed to stay 1m2f in the Eclipse when tried with blinkers. He’ll be more wiser in the headgear second time round, and again may not be far away from Solow.
Despite Gleneagles’ late defection, an intriguing renewal of the Sussex awaits, and one in which punters could make over 50% of their stakes invested about the classy, Solow, who looks very solid and has the perfect profile for this event.
*Prices correct at time of publication