Established in 1841, the Sussex Stakes is a Group 1 race over one mile which is open to runners who are aged three or older. The race takes place on day two of the Glorious Goodwood Festival. There have been some top-class winners of this race with the likes of Rip Van Winkle, Canford Cliffs and Frankle (Twice). In more recent years we have seen both Lightning Spear and Too Darn Hot successful in the race.
Three-year-old runners get an 8lb allowance for their older opponents carrying 9-0 vs 9-8 with both fillies and mares getting a 3lb allowance.
The leading trainer in the Sussex Stakes over the last 20 renewals is Aiden O’Brien who has won the race 3 times. Those 3 winners came from Henrythenavigator (2008), Rip Van Winkle (2009) & The Gurkha (2016). Other trainers who have recorded multiple wins in the Sussex Stakes are Andrew Balding (2 wins) & John Gosden (2 wins).
The leading jockey in the Sussex Stakes over the last 20 renewals is Jim Crowley who has won the race 3 times. Those 3 winners came from Here Comes When (2017), Mohaather (2020) & Baaeed (2022). Other jockeys who have recorded multiple wins in the Sussex Stakes are Frankie Dettori (2 wins), Oisin Murphy (2 wins) & Tom Queally (2 wins).
Let’s take a look at the latest horseracing odds of a dozen individuals who are engaged in the race at this point and who the betting markets consider to be leading contenders from those still engaged. I shall assess their chances individually with now less than a fortnight to go.
Trainer: William Haggas
Seems to have found the step up this level a bit more difficult than first imagined. He has won a listed race since being upped from big field handicaps but has just fallen short when push comes to shove. He has work to do in order to turn around his recent form with Master Of The Seas despite being a very short price in the Summer Mile Stakes at Ascot last time out. He has been placed at Goodwood in the past and he probably only has an outside chance of doing so once again.
Trainer: Ralph Beckett
Has not set the world this season, but did manage to win a listed race at Haydock over seven furlongs. He has been tried four times previously at this trip and on all four occasions he has failed to see it out. He is far better over shorter distances and has much work to do to reverse form with the likes of Master Of The Seas and Aldaary. He has previous winning course form, but this will stretch his stamina to the max once more.
Trainer: Andrew Balding
Has not looked himself in recent starts and was beaten out of sight on his last run at Newmarket. He found Audience almost ten lengths too strong when finishing last of six in the Group 3 Criterion Stakes. He needs to improve on that for sure and get back to the form that saw him finish a good third in the Lockinge at Newbury back in April just few lengths off Modern Games. Worthy of a place in the field but really does need to pick up.
Trainer: Richard Hannon
A winner of seven of his eighteen races with his last three wins all coming over this trip. He has taken two listed races and a Group 2 since last spring but he was rather disappointing in the Queen Anne at Royal Ascot. He has the beating of Berkshire Shadow and Angel Bleu this season but needs to have recovered sufficiently from that most recent run in order to confirm the form. Has run at Goodwood racecourse twice before without failing to trouble the judge and it could just be that the track fails to lend itself to his running style.
Trainer: Jerome Reynier
If the heavens were to open, then this French raider would be in with a serious each-way chance. He was only beaten a head in the Group 1 Prix D’Ispahan at Longchamp back in May when beaten only a head in a three-way photo by Anmaat and Light Infantry. It was a tactically run affair and the field was all bunched at the finish. If the ground remains any better than soft, he may well struggle. Gerrard Mosse has partnered with him in each and every start thus far and is likely to do so again.
Trainer: Ralph Beckett
Particularly strange to see him still entered given his mixed start to the season. He is definitely more renowned as a sprinter than a miler having scored a hat-trick of wins in the City Of York Stakes, The Cazoo Park Stakes and The Champion Sprint last season. Whilst he has won at a mile in the past, it was certainly not at this level or even on turf. He is unlikely to be troubling the best of these.
Master Of The Seas
Trainer: Charlie Appleby
Has won his fair share of races and is talented as proven when pulling right away from re-opposing Aldaary in the Group 2 Summer Mile Stakes at Newmarket. He also had the likes of Angel Bleu in behind him in that previous race and no apparent reason as to why either should reverse the form with him. He has been tried twice at this very highest level and has been beaten on both occasions. That will likely be the case once more but he can play a minor supporting role.
Trainer: Charlie Appleby
He is a globetrotting multiple Group 1 winning horse who commands serious respect in this line-up. He has won at Woodbine, Keeneland, Longchamp and Del Mar as well as Doncaster, Newbury and Newmarket. He was only just touched off in this last year by the fantastic Baeed and he will be the Godolphin first string here. If the ground stays dry, he is a serious contender and will certainly make his rivals know that they have had a race. Giving weight to Paddington will not be easy but he will fight all the way to the line.
Trainer: John and Thady Gosden
Made her seasonal reappearance in the Queen Anne at Royal Ascot and was only just touched off by Haydock specialist Triple Time. It was a fair run given that it was her first run in around nine months and she should benefit for the run. She is without a win since June 2022 and that has to be an obvious concern. She is not as battle-hardened as Modern Games and she too will struggle to give four pounds to Paddington. Every likelihood that she will run a big race but may have to settle for minor honours.
Trainer: Roger Varian
Has only won a single race in her short career to date but has been beaten by Paddington all too easily in the two races that she has met him so far. Over four lengths separated the pair on their most recent meeting in the St James’s Palace Stakes at Royal Ascot and chances are history will be repeated once more. It was probably a case of her overperforming and other rivals underperforming that saw her finish third that day. Needs to improve again to be involved and that cannot be guaranteed.
Trainer: Sir Michael Stoute
Lightly raced but a rapidly improving colt who is trained by Sir Michael Stoute. As a three-year-old, he gets some notable weight allowances from his elders, but he needs to progress again in order to trouble the best of these. He was placed in the Dewhurst last season and won a listed race on his seasonal reappearance at Newmarket following a nearly nine-month absence from the track. He is so short in the market owing to his connections and whilst still open to improvement, he just seems to lack the experience of the others. No surprise to see the wheels fall off here and he makes limited appeal.
Trainer: Aiden O’Brien
He has improved beyond all recognition this season and has to come here as the horse to beat following scintillating displays in the St James’s Palace Stakes and then the Coral-Eclipse. As a three-year-old, he gets all of the allowances from his rivals today which can only boost his claims even further. We know he stays further than this so he has plenty of stamina in reserve. Will most likely have Ryan Moore in the saddle once more and the pair look to have excellent claims and no surprise to see them extend their winning run.
Qatar Sussex Stakes Ante-Post Betting Tips
Paddington faces his toughest test to date including against some veterans who have gained plenty of experience on the wider world stage. Aiden O’Brien has won this race twice in the past so knows exactly the type of horse required to do so. With so many rivals not proven at this level, this could well turn out to be a battle between the Ballydoyle inmate and last year’s runner-up in Modern Games.
With the weight advantage a massive help to Paddington, he is likely to make the most of the concession. Modern Games is as tough as they come though and with the Appleby runners in better form now, another valiant effort can be expected. Should the rains arrive, then it would do no harm to have a saver on the French raider Facteur Cheval. He remains unexposed and would relish testing ground.
Ante-Post Odds Available with Bet365: Paddington 8/15, Inspiral 4/1, Nostrum 4/1, Modern Games 6/1, Master Of The Seas 8/1, Kinross 14/1, Chindit 20/1, Facteur Cheval 33/1, Aldaary 40/1, Charyn 40/1, Angel Bleu 66/1, Berkshire Shadow 66/1.
All odds are available at the time of writing.