Prize well within Jump's range

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The Independent Online

For many punters, the fourth day of Glorious Goodwood is a moment to take a pull, get some air back into the lungs, and prepare for the demanding final push for the line that is tomorrow's Stewards' Cup. But while there are just two Pattern races on today's card, both of them Group Three, and the 10-furlong handicap for three-year-olds which has been known, at various times, as the Extel and the Spitfire, there are still some solid bets which demand to be struck this morning.

For many punters, the fourth day of Glorious Goodwood is a moment to take a pull, get some air back into the lungs, and prepare for the demanding final push for the line that is tomorrow's Stewards' Cup. But while there are just two Pattern races on today's card, both of them Group Three, and the 10-furlong handicap for three-year-olds which has been known, at various times, as the Extel and the Spitfire, there are still some solid bets which demand to be struck this morning.

From the punting point of view, the principal race of the day is the handicap, in which Happy Diamond will attempt to record a swift hat-trick for Mark Johnston, a trainer whose Middleham stable is so far removed from Sussex that he never sends a horse without a decent chance. Happy Diamond should be a three-time winner already, having been eased down prematurely by Royston Ffrench when clear at Doncaster last month. He is now 20lb higher in the weights than at Town Moor less than five weeks ago, but will still be an automatic choice for many.

From his new mark, Happy Diamond may be vulnerable to a less exposed three-year-old, with WATER JUMP (nap 2.45) a strong candidate. John Dunlop's colt was favourite for the King George V Handicap at Royal Ascot, which is usually a tip in itself, since it attracts the best middle-distance dark horses from the main yards. Water Jump looked sure to win with a furlong to run, only for his stamina to desert him, and he should be good enough to hold on over today's shorter trip.

It is difficult to see beyond Swallow Flight and Observatory (next best 3.20) in the Lennox Stakes, with the latter preferred because he has more room for improvement. There are more possibilities in the Molecomb Stakes, if only because it is rarely a stopping-off point for decent top-class two-year olds these days, with Red Millennium (3.50) the pick ahead of Misty Eyed.

In the handicap which opens the card, Capricho will be fancied, particularly if Michael Tabor, his owner, appears in the betting ring with a suitcase full of cash, and the colt deserves to be favourite after winning his last race by three lengths. He has a good draw too, but from a 10lb higher mark, he may not be good enough to hold off Camberley (2.15), who was a winner over course and distance at the May meeting.

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