David Jolly is convinced last year’s runner-up Behemoth has had a better lead-up into his second attempt to win The Goodwood in Adelaide.
But the trainer also believes the four-year-old gelding will be facing a stronger field than he did a year ago in South Australia’s premier sprint race at Morphettville on Saturday.
Behemoth was a close second to Despatch in the 2019 Goodwood (1200m) coming off an unplaced run in the Euclase Stakes for three-year-olds the start before.
He has been aimed at the race again and goes in off a pleasing second to proven wet-track performer Jungle Edge in the Group Three McKay Stakes (1100m) on a soft track on May 2 first-up from a spell.
“He had a bit of a tough run in the Euclase last year and mentally was a bit off the boil after that,” Jolly said.
“I had to really play around with him after the Euclase and I was never really confident leading into The Goodwood but he ran super.
“Since then he’s done a bit of travel to Sydney and he’s really developed mentally.
“He’s certainly had a much better preparation leading into it compared to last year but in contrast to that I reckon the race is a better race this year.
“It’s a very strong edition.”
The Gordon Richards-trained Group One Lightning Stakes winner Gytrash, who has come of age this season, is also back for his second attempt at The Goodwood and was the $3.70 favourite on Thursday in a field which includes fellow Group One winners Santa Ana Lane, Trekking, Sunlight and Lyre.
Behemoth, who was bought by Grand Syndicates for $6000 as a yearling, has won three of his 13 starts with five seconds and was at $14 on Thursday.
“I can’t be happier with the horse,” Jolly said.
“His draw (barrier 7) is perfect. I think the conditions will be ideal.
“It will just be a matter of whether a few of those better ones turn up or not.
“There looks to be a bit more pressure than in last year’s race up the top of the speed which I think will suit my bloke.”
Jolly won the Goodwood with Zip Zip Array in 2002, his lone Group One win as a trainer.
Article from JustHorseRacing.com.au