Dual Guineas winner Churchill was eased when making no impression in the closing stages of the St. James’s Palace Stakes at Royal Ascot last month, eventually finishing fourth, 3½ lengths behind Lancaster Bomber. It’s worth noting that Aidan O’Brien’s colt had beaten his stable companion on five previous occasions, so something was clearly amiss at the Berkshire course. His previous defeat of Barney Roy in the 2,000 Guineas at Newmarket – notwithstanding the fact that Richard Hannon’s charge stumbled badly and became unbalanced on the descent into the Dip – is arguably the best single piece of form on offer and he could represent value in a race where he faces only one serious rival.
Of course, Ribchester, who’s yet to finish out of the first three in his 12-race career and has three Group 1 victories to his name, is not a colt to take lightly but, in receipt of a 7lb weight-for-age allowance, Churchill may just have the edge on this occasion. Despite the ‘Glorious’ epithet, weather conditions at Goodwood should be less oppressive than at Ascot and allow the son of Galileo to show his true colours.
Goodwood 3.35 Churchill to win (15/8 with Betfred)