Glorious Goodwood 2022: Could it be the best one ever?

Goodwood boss Adam Waterworth says a combination of factors could make next week’s Glorious the best the racecourse has ever seen.

He says the visit of big names like Baaeed and Stradivarius plus a good weather forecast are driving strong ticket sales – and everything is looking good for five days of racing that the huge crowds will relish.

Baaeed is the world’s current top-rated racehorse and is set to go for glory in the showpiece race of the week, Wednesday’s one-mile £1m Qatar Sussex Stakes, taking on the likes of Coroebus, Native Trail and Aldaary.

But even that may not be the high point of the week – the biggest headline could be nabbed by superstar stayer Stradivarius, who already has a record four Goodwood Cups to his name and is coming back to go for a remarkable fifth in Tuesday’s big feature. It will almost certainly be his last race before retirement.

Baaeed is set to run in the £1m Sussex Stakes on Wednesday / Picture: Getty

Fields for the big races later in the week, like Thursday’s Nassau Stakes, Friday’s King George Stakes and Saturday’s Stewards’ Cup, are all shaping up nicely – with some of Britain’s top runners set to be taken on by leading contenders from Ireland, Europe and farther afield.

Waterworth, managing director of events at Goodwood, said preparations for the week were going extremely well and staff were confident it would be a memorable week.

"The heatwave does wonders for ticket sales – and so does news that horses that people know and love, like Stradivarius and Baaeed, are set to run,” Waterworth said.

"If everything goes to plan it could be our best ever festival week. The forecast looks to be set fair and the line-ups for all the key races look first-rate.”

Stradivarius could be the big headline maker of the week / Picture: Getty

Crowds on Tuesday and Wednesday are traditionally quieter than the final three days – when numbers move up towards the 25,000 limit – but Stradivarius and Baaeed have given the first two days a boost.

Waterworth said: “They look like being busier than usual and should give the week a cracking start.

"The racecourse and the whole site look a picture and we can’t to welcome race-goers in. After Covid hit us in 2020 and was still hanging over us a little last year, this feels like the first full, proper Glorious week for three years, and it has all the ingredients to be memorable.”

Festival focus – page 77