As minefields go, they don’t get bigger than today’s card at Goodwood where, barring Minding and, perhaps, the two-year-old maiden where Lockheed stands out it looks the proverbial bookmaker's paradise. However, there will hopefully be gains elsewhere and Doncaster looks the prized venue where Luca Cumani has great chances of a double with Laurence and Diamond Geyser.
The season has been painfully slow for the Bedford House maestro after a wetter than wet summer but his team appear to be right back on song now and Laurence is fancied to gain a third career success in the Unison Essential Cover Wherever You Work Handicap (3.30).
The Dubawi gelding had slipped back to a winning mark in a valuable nine furlong handicap at Yarmouth this month after two inauspicious efforts earlier in the summer at Newmarket and York but what connections had not counted for was a steady pace and, although travelling well, Laurence found the gaps coming too late a he finished with a flourish to be beaten only a length and a quarter by Heisman.
The wide-open spaces of Town Moor and the slightly longer trip on offer today can only play to the strengths of Laurence who scored by a length and a quarter from Sealife over ten furlongs at Beverley last August, and he looks worth a 1pt investment.
Stablemate Diamond Geyser had the obligatory three runs before finding winning form in a Lingfield all-weather handicap in June when stepped up considerably in distance to a mile and a half, and then looked a little unlucky when beaten half a length by Niceoncenturion over an extended mile and five furlongs at Newbury this month where the third was four lengths adrift.
The Champs Elysees colt sidestepped a much harder engagement at Goodwood on Friday to take his chance in the Unison Campaign For Public Services Handicap (4.05) and, although raised 6lb since his Newbury defeat, he looks the sort to progress further with experience and looks worth a 1pt investment too.
Robert Cowell’s prowess with sprinters needs no introduction and Strath Burn can record his first success for the Six Mile Bottom trainer in the Unison Defending Your NHS Conditions Stakes at Doncaster (4.40).
The Equiano colt was trained by Charlie Hills when beaten only a short head by top-class Twilight Son in the Group 1 Sprint Cup at Haydock last September and has shaped well in two starts for Cowell this season - being beaten only three lengths when sixth to Don’t Touch in a very competitive-looking Listed contest at Salisbury on his latest start in June.
This event looks a much easier kettle of fish and he looks worth a 2pt investment as he bids for his place in the Haydock line up again later in the year.