Bookmakers battle back from terrible Tuesday to claim the upper hand at Goodwood
What started as a potential bloodbath for bookmakers ended in their favour as they recovered from a first-day broadside of favourites to take the upper hand at Goodwood.
Bookmakers feared the worst on Tuesday after five market leaders were cheered home by punters, headed by Stradivarius in the Goodwood Cup and supported by Dark Vision and Sir Dancealot.
Paddy Power spokesman Paul Binfield said: “The opening day was glorious for punters. Favourites Dark Vision, Sir Dancealot and Stradivarius were our worst results, particularly as they came in quickfire succession. They definitely had us fearing the worst."
Nicola McGeady, of Ladbrokes, said: "Day one was a disaster but as the week progressed results went in our favour.
"Wins for Battaash and Mirage Dancer hurt us but we've emerged fairly unscathed with the Stewards' Cup result particularly pleasing."
Wednesday went the other way with 125-1 winner Feel Glorious and just one favourite, Lil Rockerfeller, coming home first.
Binfield added: "The books made a big recovery on the Wednesday in a case of two extremes. Getting Without Parole and Expert Eye beaten in Wednesday’s Sussex was a massive get-out-of-jail free card for us and our best result as we took both on."
Betway's Alan Alger, summing up his firm's start, said: "When Lil Rockerfeller crossed the line in Wednesday's first race, six of the first eight favourites had won, making it a far from glorious start.
"Galway’s Wednesday card had only one winning favourite and that afternoon at Goodwood signalled some huge-price winners, topped off by Feel Glorious at 125-1."
Thursday and Friday featured plenty of shorter-priced winners but the 20-1 success of Gifted Master in the week's big betting handicap, the Stewards' Cup, redressed the balance.
Binfield said: "The last three days were mixed but the layers were definitely in front for the week and would have bitten your hand off for a final outcome like that after Tuesday."
Alger added: "Thursday and Friday were tough at both tracks but Saturday’s competitive Goodwood card more than made up for it and we saw a fair spread of business – with only one winning favourite and a 20-1 shot winning the big race of the day."
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