The 2020 Sussex Stakes is the Group 1 highlight of the second day of the 2020 Qipco Glorious Goodwood Festival (Wednesday 29 July). A select field of seven runners are set to go to post for what could be a thrilling contest between the best of this season’s three-year-old milers and three older horses who still have the potential to take higher order.
Circus Maximum has been a model of consistency since reverting to a mile. He’s collected three Group 1s over the trip and sets a decent standard to surpass after finishing second to Too Darn Hot in last season’s Sussex Stakes. For all that, he does looks vulnerable conceding 8lb to the classic generation.
Fellow 4-year-old Mohaather is now rated the equal of Circus Maximus after a dominant performance in winning a Group 2 at Ascot last time. He was punted off the boards that day and, as the money also came in wheelbarrows before he was beaten by Circus Maximus at Royal Ascot, he could be the real deal. He certainly has a turn-of-foot that could be seen to devastating effect here.
Son Donato finished second to Mohaather last time but, after a year off, he could close the gap. However, he will need to find a fair bit of improvement to trouble Mohaather who has also not reached the ceiling of his ability.
Aidan O’Brien saddles two 3-year-olds as well as Circus Maximus, but both Vatican City and Wichita have been beaten into second in the Irish and English 2,000 Guineas. There conquerors both re-oppose and there’s no reason why they should reverse the form.
Kameko was an impressive winner of the 2,000 Guineas at Newmarket and, after not staying the trip in the Derby, he returns to a mile. However, stamina looked to win him the race that day and one or two of these possess more of a turn-of-foot.
This will be the acid-test for Siskin, who won the Irish 2,000 Guineas from Vatican City with a moderate bunch behind. However, it’s the immediate burst of speed he finds when asked that could settle this contest, if the stronger early pace doesn’t find him out. I think either he or Mohaather will have too much speed for the others in the final stages but, as Siskin receives 8lb from his elder, he’s our Sussex Stakes tip.
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