2021 King George Qatar Stakes Betting Favourites and Goodwood Odds Leaders
The countdown to ‘Glorious Goodwood’ is almost over as one of the biggest horse-racing festivals returns on Tuesday (July 27), and the King George Qatar Stakes will be among its top draws. Most horse betting sites in the UK set Stradivarius at odds 4/5 to win.
The Group 2 fixture will call upon some of the biggest racing talents in the land aged three years and up, batting over five furlongs in a flat event that rarely fails to meet expectations.
And Charlie Hills will hope to become the race’s most successful trainer of all time with aid from the race’s most successful runner of all time: Battaash.
The seven-year-old speed merchant has already won the King George Qatar Stakes an all-time record of four times, while Hills is still tied with two others with his four titles. Battaash does already hold a unique feat of his own, however, being the only horse to have earned his four wins in consecutive years (2017-20).
Jack Jarvis won this meet four times with three different horses between 1936 and 1946, while Paddy Prendergast required four different runners to clinch his four successes between 1955 and 1962.
And the BBC reported on Battaash’s 2020 victory being the fastest of the lot, bettering his winning time each time he’s run. Last year’s triumph came in a stellar time of 55.62 seconds, but can he go one better again under the July sun at Goodwood in 2021?
EverythingHorseUK takes a look at the favourite’s form ahead of the King George Qatar Stakes on Friday (July 30), as well as a couple of the leading challengers to his throne.
Among a field of 20 runners or more, it’s difficult to look beyond a horse who has been quite so imperious at Goodwood during his career, but most of all in this specific race.
Hills’ star stallion was described as arguably the fastest horse on the planet after reaching a top speed of 48.63mph during his record-tying four win in this event last year, but is better still to come?
Jockey Jim Crowley has led Battaash to six wins in his last nine outings, although there is cause for concern considering he finished fourth in the King’s Stand Stakes at Royal Ascot in June, his only outing thus far in 2021.
That wobble to Oxted could open up the possibility for an outsider to come in and end the streak, though betting against one of the most dominant streaks in horse racing may not be advisable.
Dragon Symbol (7/2)
Just like young trainer Archie Watson, three-year-old Dragon Power is a relative newcomer to the circuit, but don’t let a lack of credentials convince you that either are to be underestimated.
Having only made his debut in March, Dragon Power started his career with four successive wins and has since placed second in his last three outings.
Some might consider that a drop-off in form, but the colt looks well capable of challenging at the top level considering each of those three silver medals have come at Group 2 and Group 1 (twice) standard.
It’s worth highlighting Dragon Power won his only previous experience over five furlongs in the Tangerine Trees Conditions Stakes at Hamilton in May. The fact his remaining races have all been over six suggests he’s got the gas tank to offer Battaash competition.
Winter Power (9/2)
One of three contenders trainer Tim Easterby is set to run at the King George Qatar Stakes this year, Winter Power will look to shine in far sunnier elements despite her name suggesting otherwise.
Alongside stable-mate Art Power, Winter will return to Goodwood a year after finishing fourth of eight in the Tatler Nursery Handicap, and Easterby has faith his entrants will be a threat:
“It’s great for the yard to have horses you can go to war with in big races.”
Great to catch up with Tim Easterby on Racing TV today to get the latest news on Art Power and Winter Power after their cracking runs at Royal Ascot last week. Find out his plans for the pair. pic.twitter.com/czwQUDEhna
— Racing TV (@RacingTV) June 22, 2021
There’s reason to doubt whether Winter Power has the quality to last in a higher-class field, however. Despite winning five of her last seven races, those two misses came in dramatic ninth and 10th-place finishes in what were her only outings at Group 2 or above.
A horse of extremes, it looks likely we’ll either see the filly turn up for the odds with her best performance to date, or fall painfully short among a talented field.
King George Qatar Stakes – Odds Leaders
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Featured image: Goodwood Horseracing Course © Copyright Janine Forbes
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