2.25 Goodwood: Group 3 Thoroughbred Stakes, 1m
Rocchigiani caught the eye twice this year. Now stepping up to a mile again he looks the one to beat in this contest in my eyes, hence I am delighted with the odds on offer.
The German raider always tracked the pace and travelled pretty well until 2.5 furlongs from home in the Jersey Stakes at Royal Ascot. He couldn’t move forward with horses right in front of him but also appeared flat footed when gaps opened up. He ran on nicely in the closing stages for a solid 5th place finish, though.
He had to give about three pounds of weight away to the majority of the field that day. No easy task, even less so on fast ground and 7 furlongs. Clearly the test was too sharp, but equally clearly he came out with his reputation enhanced.
Earlier the season he would have been a runaway winner of the German 2000 Guineas, if not for the exciting Maljoom. Rocchigiani was always right on the speed and kicked on as soon as he entered the home straight. He had the entire field off the bridle; only the late finishing Maljoom got to him in the end.
The fast ground at Goodwood is a slight question mark. Although, it wasn’t slow at Cologone either, so I’m hopeful it won’t be too much of an issue for him here.
10pts win – Rocchigiani @ 13/2
6.30 Wolverhampton: Class 6 Handicap, 5f
Scale Force finished a few weeks ago over the minimum trip at Wolverhampton in a manner that suggested he’s ready to win. He had a troubled run, which started with usual poor start, and was short of room over a furlong out at a crucial stage.
Down to a mark of 56 now, he’s possibly quite well handicapped, given he performed strongly off higher marks earlier this year, most notably off a 66 mark over 5 furlongs at Wolverhampton in February when he finished half a lengths beaten in third, and his topspeed matched his mark.
If he doesn’t mess up the start this time he should be a prime chance to win, especially with the valuable 5lb claim of Aiden Keeley in the saddle.
10pts win – Scale Force @ 12/1