Arod heads provisional Celebration Mile field at Goodwood

Solow got the better of Arod in the Sussex Stakes
Solow got the better of Arod in the Sussex Stakes

The horse that turned the Sussex Stakes into a real contest could return to Goodwood for next week’s Celebration Mile.

Arod pushed French superstar Solow all the way in the £1m showpiece race of the Qatar Goodwood Festival and the runner-up is among 31 entries for the Group 2 Doom Bar-sponsored mile contest on the Saturday of the track’s August Bank Holiday Festival.

The Peter Chapple-Hyam-trained four-year-old is joined in the entries for what is the biggest race staged at Goodwood outside of Glorious week by a stellar supporting cast.

Richard Hannon has entered Qatar Lennox Stakes winner Toormore plus Estidhkaar, Moheet and Emell.

Aidan O’Brien has lined up War Envoy and Cougar Mountain for the £100,000 contest, while Charlie Hills has Dutch Connection and Cable Bay as options.

Balty Boys, Captain Cat, Temptress, Bossy Guest, Kodi Bear and Richard Pankhurst are other interesting entries and racecourse managing director is delighted with the quality and quantity of entries.

“Obviously we won’t know until nearer the festival who will run and who won’t but potentially, it’s a very strong line-up. It’s always nice to see horses who have run very well at Goodwood recently coming back for a race like this,” he said.

The Saturday of the August Festival this year has been boosted by the fact it does not clash – as it usually does – with the Saturday of York’s Ebor meeting.

That means Channel 4 Racing will be live from Goodwood that day and will show four races – the Celebration Mile, the Group 3 Prestige Stakes, a £100,000 seven-furlong handicap and the listed March Stakes.

The Prestige Stakes was won in 2013 by Amazing Maria, who has won three Group 1 races for trainer Ed Dunlop this year, while the March Stakes has been known to throw up runners that have gone on to contest the Melbourne Cup.

Tickets have been selling well for the festival, which begins next Friday, August 28, and Goodwood officials hope to welcome 25,000-plus race-goers over the three days.

A spectacular fireworks display will round off Friday night’s action, while a range of entertainment themed on British seaside holidays of yesteryear – including a beach and live rock’n’roll music – will give families plenty to do throughout the event.

Waterworth added: “Ticket sales have been strong and are ahead of last year. We’d hope anyone who saw the fireworks last year would want to come back to see those again, and this year they’ll be even better.”

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