2:40 Goodwood (5th May) - Result

An EBF maiden race for colts & geldings.

The first 6f race of the two-year-old season.

This is an intriguing but open race with no proven form. However, the betting may be a very good indicator to an improved effort from a couple of juveniles and Richard Hannon's debutantes should always be respected at Goodwoood.

Richard Hannon has sent some of his best two-year-old prospects to make their debut at Goodwood and featured a 20% strike rate in recent years. Crown Dependency is the more fancied in the betting on the exchanges. This son of Acclamation cost  £65,000. Their other representative, Airbourne Again, is owned by Kennet Valley Thoroughbreds and cost 40,000gns. Similarly sired by Acclamation out of the talented mare Bunditten who won on debut for Andrew Reid, and a horse I remember fondly. Logic would suggest that Hughes (riding the former) is the most forward although Hannon can often fray the nerves of his supporters with second strings prevailing. It would be no surprise to see one of these two run a big race.

Mark Johnston has hit form this month with a couple of juvenile winners. Drummoyne was relatively fancied on debut but went badly right from the stalls as a consequence of being on the outside birth. From that point, this chestnut colt by Street Cry had little chance. Mid-race Drummoyne made progress and looked to hold some chance but the start took its toll and against a competitive field he faltered. It is worth noting he has been entered to run in a stakes race at holds an engagement for the Phoenix Stakes (Group 1). Johnston often sends some of his better juveniles to Goodwood and features fair win and place claims with his fancied two-year-olds on their second start.

The two most interesting juveniles with regard to the betting are Arabian Falcon and Ewell Place.

Arabian Falcon is an attractive son of Dutch Art who ran in a competitive heat at Newbury where several of those competitors have gone on to win. This colt was unfancied but then backed quite substantially before the off. Dwyer [jockey] clearly rode this juvenile with a view to gaining experience and probably waiting for the first of the 6f races to begin. The form is fair without being anything special. However, what we have to try and assess is the likely improvement. There is little doubt this 36,000euro purchase will progress and it could be a marked. Owned by Jaber Abdullah, a fair strike rate at the course, has been entered to run at stakes level are all positives. Meehan has a very good win and place rate with his juveniles on their second start. There are many reasons to consider a big run is on the cards today. However, there is always a slight concern when trying to assume likely improvement. It is certainly a far cry from proven form and that always brings caution. On balance, I would consider Arabian Falcon will go well today and has place claims.

Ewell Park was plunged in the deep end when competing at Ascot in a stakes where the first and second are held in high regard and bound for Royal Ascot. It is difficult to assess this youngster but Mills is a very talented trainer. The betting is the key to this gelding's chances. if priced 13/2 & less (SP) expect a big run.

Conclusion: All of these juveniles have something to prove but conversely a number have potential to go well. Hannon often sends talented juveniles to Goodwood - one of his pair will run a big race, Arabian Falcon is likely to improve and has sound each way claims, while Ewell Park would be a solid hope if well backed & Drommoyne must be respected. Intriguing.

HCE: ''A sparkling performance from Crown Dependency who may have been weak in the betting but strong at the finish, with a comfortable success. The money was down on Ewell Park. Mills youngster was clearly expected to go well but had no answer when Hannon's victor breezed up. Airbourne Again ran well for third. Arabian Falcon was quite well backed but always on the back foot after a tardy start. To be fair he didn't look the most willing although this may have been due to inexperience or more likely a need for a more testing trip. Meehan's two-year-olds have yet to make an impact this season and it may pay to wait until they find some form. Arabian Falcon ran on at the finish but it was all too late,''

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