No fewer than 14 of the 20 horses going forward in the £1 million Qatar Sussex Stakes at the Qatar Goodwood Festival later this month have already finished first or second at Group 1 level, including eight individual Group 1 winners.
Too Darn Hot is the current favourite, with last year’s European champion two-year-old having bounced back to his best for trainer John Gosden and owner/breeder Lord Lloyd-Webber with an impressive victory over seven furlongs in the Group 1 Qatar Prix Jean Prat at Deauville, France, last weekend.
Gosden won the 2014 Qatar Sussex Stakes with Kingman and the Newmarket handler could also be represented by a son of the top miler in King Of Comedy, a progressive three-year-old colt beaten a neck on his first Group 1 appearance in the St James’s Palace Stakes at Royal Ascot.
A strong three-year-old challenge could also feature Group 1 Commonwealth Cup victor Advertise (Martyn Meade), Group 1 Irish 2,000 Guineas scorer Phoenix Of Spain (Charlie Hills) and Skardu (William Haggas), who was third in the Group 1 QIPCO 2,000 Guineas at Newmarket.
The older generation is set to be well-represented, with four of the first five home in this year’s Group 1 Queen Anne Stakes: Lord Glitters (David O’Meara), Beat The Bank (Andrew Balding), Romanised (Ken Condon) and Le Brivido (Aidan O’Brien) – all entered.
Accidental Agent (Eve Johnson-Houghton) took the Royal Ascot showpiece in 2018, while Zabeel Prince (Roger Varian) and Dream Castle (Saeed bin Suroor) have both captured Group 1 prizes over nine furlongs this year.