ITV Racing Tips: Let Benbatl commence! Godolphin star could land Celebration Mile
The final Saturday of August provides an interesting mix of pattern races and handicaps which culminates in the Celebration Mile at Goodwood.
Goodwood’s Group 2 race has attracted an assortment of solid performers with one stand-out, Godolphin’s Benbatl who is returning from a 337-day absence.
The winner of £5.8 million in prize-money has not run since September 2020 but will attempt to get his seven-year-old campaign off to a successful start.There are two Group 3 races, two Listed races and a couple of handicaps among the seven races from Goodwood, Beverley and Newmarket which will be covered by ITV4 from 1.30pm.
We have previewed the three most significant races of the day in our ITV Racing Tips.
Billesden Brook won this prize in 2017 before going on to land the 1,000 Guineas the following year. Whether there is a potential Classic winner among this year’s renewal remains to be seen and as they go 7-2 the field the bookies haven’t found an outstanding candidate among the 11 declarations.
Value Theory, third in the Sweet Solera last time, and Prosperous Voyage look solid each-way candidates but the filly with the form in the book is Hello You. Placed in the Albany and Duke of Cambridge Stakes, she looked as though she could have made the frame again the Lowther Stakes at York last week but was stopped in her run. She makes a quick turnaround but could be suited by seven furlongs.
Tabdeed, beaten at Group 3 level twice this year, drops down in class and this looks like it could be a prime opportunity for him to regain the winning thread.
Khaadem is another looking to rediscover past form, now in first time blinkers. Neither have been as busy as Summerghand who after some indifferent runs looked like he was coming back to his best in the Stewards Cup.
He finished halfway down the field in 12th but picked up from the back of the nearside pack to come in just over five lengths behind the winner, despite meeting trouble. A course and distance winner, he beat Oxted when he landed the Abernant Stakes in the spring and a reproduction of that could be good enough.
A warm welcome back to Benbatl, one of the most versatile horses in training and flag-bearer for the Saeed Bin Suroor stable for more years than he would like.
Hopefully Real World can progress to take on that mantle, but Benbatl, who is still an entire at the age of seven, is no back number yet. He was supposed to contest this race 12 months ago, but rain scuppered that.
He has had only one run since finishing third in the 2020 Saudi Cup on dirt, finishing third behind Kameko in the Group 2 Joel Stakes. This is a level lower and he has nothing of the 2,000 Guineas winner’s calibre among his opponents here. With Oisin Murphy back in the saddle it looks like the stable means business.
ITV Racing Schedule, Saturday, 28th August
13:50 Goodwood – Prestige Stakes
14:05 Beverley – Silver Cup Handicap
14:25 Goodwood – 7f handicap
14:45 Newmarket – Hopeful Stakes
15:00 Goodwood – March Stakes
15:15 York – Beverley Bullet
15:35 Goodwood – Celebration Mile
All Odds and Markets are correct as of the date of publishing.