Should you back or lay Stradivarius in 2020 Goodwood Cup?

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Goodwood Cup

Any investor would love a return of 57% over about five minutes, but that is possible by backing Stradivarius at -175.01 with BetOnline to win the Goodwood Cup on Tuesday. The Aidan O’Brien-trained Santiago poses a major risk to that investment, while Nayef Road is +1000 to reverse the Ascot Gold Cup form with the favourite.

Punters must decide whether they are a backer or layer of Stradivarius at the latest odds for the stayers’ race over two miles. He has been the leading staying horse over the last two years and won the Gold Cup at Ascot in June for the third time. The horse also won the Goodwood Cup for the last three years and so is looking to achieve the rare feat of winning the same Group 1 contest four seasons in a row. Double Trigger, which won the race in 1995, 1997 and 1998, is the only other three-time winner.

The odds for Stradivarius to win the Goodwood Cup this week are shortening. The John Gosden-trained runner was returned as the -125 favourite in the last two years and won as the second favourite in 2017. There have been seven winning favourites since 2008, while the winner was in the first three in the betting 10 times over that spell.

The winning-most age over the last 10 years is five years old with four wins. Five older horses have won the Goodwood Cup this century, however, and Stradivarius is aged six. Frankie Dettori rides the horse this week and the jockey has already won the race four times.

The Group 1 race is for horses aged three and older. Three-year-olds carry 8st 5lbs, which is 17lbs less than the older horses. Mares and fillies receive a further allowance of 3lbs.

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Santiago from the Classic generation and therefore carries over a stone less than Stradivarius in the Goodwood Cup. Nayef Road is a colt aged four and so races against the odds-on favourite at level weights. Stradivarius beat the horse by 10 lengths in the Ascot Gold Cup while carrying one pound more than the runner-up.

The average Official Rating (OR) of the Goodwood Cup winners over the last 10 years is 114. Stradivarius ran to ratings of 100, 118 and 120 in the last three renewals and delivered a career-high OR of 125 when completing a trio of Gold Cup wins last month.

Stradivarius has won 15 races from 22 starts and amassed over £2.75 million in prize money over five seasons. In addition to his official earnings, the horse also won the stayers’ £1,000,000 bonus in 2018.

Santiago is the second favourite for the Goodwood Cup at +275. If Stradivarius is not at his best, giving so much weight to this year’s Irish Derby winner will be a tough ask. Santiago’s connections have decided to go down the stayers’ route and the horse is the current ante-post favourite for the St Leger.

Ascot form says Stradivarius beats Nayef Road at Goodwood but may have to settle for second place behind Santiago. In fact, Stradivarius could pass the baton to Santiago in the long distance division. That may lead to an entry for the Prix de l’Arc de Triomphe, in which case Dettori may be forced to choose between Stradivarius and Enable – two of his favourite horses – in the Paris feature.

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