The jockey Frankie Dettori has said that he is eagerly looking forward to being back on board Big Orange on Tuesday in the Qatar Goodwood Cup.
In the last two seasons the race was won by Michael Bell’s stayer but this year it is being run as a Group One for the first time.
Big Orange was one of a handful of winners that Dettori missed at Royal Ascot through injury and it is highly likely that he felt regretful when he saw James Doyle partner him to a popular victory in the Gold Cup.
Writing on his Ladbrokes blog Dettori said, “I can’t wait to ride Big Orange. He’s everybody’s favourite. After all, he’s won two Goodwood Cups. The key with him is the weather. He needs dry weather. I really hope we don’t get those summer showers to spoil it. Apart from that, he is a horse who wears his heart on his sleeve and tries like hell.”
Big Orange is one of eighteen remaining possible horses. Others in contention include fellow Royal Ascot winners Stradivarius and Oriental Fox as well as Cesarewitch winner Sweet Selection, Northumberland Plate hero Higher Power and the consistent Sheikhzayedroad are others in contention.
Dal Harraild, Pallasator, Prince Of Arran, Us Army Ranger and last year’s Irish St Leger winner Wicklow Brave are others of interest.
Dettori also wrote about the Nassau Stakes saying that he needs to pick between riding Shutter Speed and So Mi Dar.
“I have to make a decision on who I will ride in the Nassau Stakes – Shutter Speed or So Mi Dar. John Gosden and I will make a decision in the week but at this moment it’s very hard to pick. I’m keeping my options open. Obviously So Mi Dar has had a long layoff, whereas Shutter Speed is up to scratch and you know how good she is. Decisions, decisions, as they say!”