Paul Hanagan: Hoping to help German-trained filly to make winning bow

GLORIOUS Goodwood is always a hard place to find winners and it has been no exception this week.

I was delighted on to get a victory on board Hollins in the opening race on Wednesday. The seven-year-old had not been in first spot for 14 months, since the Investec Handicap at York racecourse.

At 20-1, Middleham trainer Micky Hammond’s horse – which runs under both codes and has been to both the Cheltenham Festival and Royal Ascot – wasn’t exactly expected to be a major player in the Goodwood Stakes, but he won it well for me.

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Today, probably the best chance I have of a winner out of my four rides comes from an unusual source.

The German-trained filly Rockatella runs in Britain for the first time in the Group 3 Oak Tree Stakes at 4.50pm.

She’s won twice in Italy during her career, and my agent says she’s very well thought of. She’s also the trainer’s first horse in this country – so, hopefully, we can combine to make it a happy debut for him.

On to Saturday – and the fifth and closing day of Glorious Goodwood – and I’m on Barefoot Lady in the top-class Nassau Stakes, part of the QIPCO British Champion Series.

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She’s very much there on merit. Barefoot Lady ran superbly at York in May to be runner-up in the Group 3 Tattersalls Musidora Stakes. A place in the Group 1 Coronation Stakes at the royal meeting was well deserved, too.

As expected, it will be a hot race on the Sussex Downs, but I think she will be there or thereabouts. I would be delighted if she ran into a place.

The race after the Nassau is the big betting event of the week at Goodwood – the Blue Square Stewards’ Cup. I’m on a relatively new horse to Richard Fahey’s yard, Brave Prospector. He’s quite a long price for the race.

I have yet to ride him, but I’m told he ran well enough when mid-division in the John Smith’s Scottish Stewards’ Cup at Hamilton Park earlier this month. We’ll see tomorrow if he can come on for that race.

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Which brings me to my best chance of a winner during the latter stages of the festival – Mickdaam in the 4.20pm maiden race.

The two-year-old ran a good race on his debut to be third in a decent maiden at Newmarket early in July.

I like him and I think he could go close tomorrow afternoon. Of course, with such a young inexperienced horse, a flat galloping track would have been better. It all depends how he takes to the undulations of the Downs.

On Sunday, I’m expecting Rose Blossom to be back in action. She returned to something like the form we expect when third in the Summer Stakes at York a few weeks ago. If she continues to progress, she will take all the beating in the Queensferry Stakes at The Roodee at 3.30pm.

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I’m already looking forward to the highlight of the racing year in Yorkshire – the Welcome to Yorkshire Ebor Festival on Knavesmire in three weeks.

There are currently only early entries for a handful of races, the major Group contests and the very valuable sales race – the DBS Premier Yearling Stakes – not forgetting the Betfred Ebor itself. The sales race is a memorable one for me because Wootton Bassett won it last August. The Fahey yard has a number of entries but it’s too early to make running plans.

The same can be said for the Betfred Ebor where we have Cosmic Sun and High Office engaged. The latter was last seen when mid-division in the John Smith’s Silver Cup.

The next racing at York is the four-day Welcome to Yorkshire Ebor Festival – from Wednesday to Saturday August 17-20. Daily admission prices range from £8 to £52. Early bird and group discounts are available. Great value three-day and four-day badges start from £17 and £22 for the Course Enclosure up to £135 and £175 in the County Stand. Further details at or by calling 01904 620911.