Gallagher Hoping Mac Can Prove Super in Bluesquare.com Stewards’ Cup 21/07/09
The final day of Glorious Goodwood features the fiercely competitive £100,000 Bluesquare.com Stewards’ Cup (3.45pm). After saddling Mac Gille Eoin (8st 11lb) to be fifth in the six-furlong heritage handicap last year, trainer John Gallagher is optimistic that his talented can fare even better in this season’s contest.
The five-year-old, rated a 14/1 chance with Blue Square, booked his place in the race by breaking the track record with an all-the-way success in a six-furlong handicap at Epsom on July 2, and was narrowly denied over the same course and distance in another handicap on Derby Day.
Gallagher commented: “The plan has been the Bluesquare.com Stewards’ Cup for Mac Gille Eoin for quite some time now and we ran him at Epsom at the start of July just to give him a confidence boost and just to make sure that he got into the race.
“He’s won there, picked up a 3lb penalty, and he has come out it in good order. He loves the six furlongs at Goodwood, having won over it twice, and I thought he ran a very good race in the Bluesquare.com Stewards’ Cup last year on ground that was probably a bit soft for his liking.
“We thought that if we could get him into this year’s race on a mark of around 95 or 96, then we would be in with a definite squeak. He works on an undulating gallop at home and that might be the reason why he runs so well at Goodwood. As a two-year-old, he was a big baby and terrified of everything but once he won his first race, he seemed to change overnight and he became a lion.
“The ideal situation would be for him to sit in the first half dozen and then go as soon as they hit the dip - he loves the rising ground at Goodwood. I was over the moon to hear that High Standing will skip the race because that was the one horse who looked head and shoulders above the rest and it looks a very open race now.
“I am more confident coming into the Bluesquare.com Stewards’ Cup this time around. He’s suddenly come into himself and, while the ground will play a major part, he’s probably running off a mark that is 3lb better off than last year. He wasn’t beaten far then and the fact that he loves the track and is coming into the race off the back of a confidence-booster mean I would have to be hopeful of his chances.”
The market for this year’s Bluesquare.com Stewards’ Cup is headed Markab (8st 13lb) and Prohibit (8st 13lb), who were fourth and fifth respectively in the Wokingham Handicap at Royal Ascot and are quoted as 8/1 joint favourites with the race sponsor.
Other notable contenders include top-weight and Wokingham Handicap second Asset (10st & 14/1), Something (8st 9lb & 14/1), Genki (8st 10lb & 14/1), the progressive Roker Park (8st 8lb & 14/1) and Group Three winner Knot In Wood (9st 3lb & 20/1).
Bluesquare.com Stewards’ Cup - Sponsor’s Prices
Others on request, Each-way 1/4 1,2,3,4,5
COURSE IN FANTASTIC CONDITION
Seamus Buckley, Clerk of the Course at Goodwood, today reported the ground at the West Sussex venue to be in “fantastic condition” ahead of Glorious Goodwood 2009, which commences on Tuesday, Wednesday 28, and runs through to Saturday, August 1.
Buckley reported at 3.00pm today: “I have just walked the course and am describing the ground as good. The GoingStick reading is currently 8.4 and that is indicative of current conditions.
“The course is in fantastic condition and I am absolutely delighted with it. There is a great covering of grass and it walks extremely well.
“Over the past few weeks the weather has been kind to us and it will be great to start Glorious Goodwood on natural ground. We do not anticipate having to water the course before racing begins on Tuesday, July 28.
“We are all set fair for what promises to be five wonderful days of racing.”
Six-day confirmations for the opening day of Glorious Goodwood will be made tomorrow.
Glorious Goodwood, which runs from Tuesday, July 28, to Saturday, August 1, inclusive, features five days of outstanding racing action at one of the world’s most beautiful racecourses. With tickets selling well for all five days, racegoers are advised to book in advance to avoid disappointment.
To book tickets please call 01243 755022 and to reserve restaurant places call 01243 755027 or alternatively visit the website www.goodwood.com and book online.
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