Quickest ground of the week in store for Friday's runners at 'roasting' Goodwood
The going at Goodwood has dried out to good to firm, good in places for the penultimate day of the meeting.
It has been a glorious week of weather at the course, which has led to the ground tightening up throughout the festival, with clerk of the course Ed Arkell deciding to water areas of the track after racing on Thursday.
At the close of play on Thursday the ground was described as good, good to firm in places, but the description was flipped round by Arkell on Friday morning.
Speaking shortly after 11am, Arkell said: "The current going is good to firm, good in places. The ground is on the easier side of good to firm. The weather is absolutely roasting now and was quite warm when I was walking round the track at 6am this morning.
"Last night we took down the rails on both of the bends to provide fresh ground and we also put water on the top, bottom and far bends.
"We also watered along what we call the field side from the ten-furlong start to the bottom bend.
"The ground has dried up half a going description every day, which has been a little slower than I expected really, so that has been helpful."
Arkell added that it was possible further watering would take place on Friday evening if race times suggested the ground was too fast.
He said: "We put 8mm of rain on the selected areas overnight and if we dry up throughout the day then we will have to make a decision about what to do with the track tonight.
"If we water any part of the track we will water the home straight. We will see what the times are like but we don't want the track to be like a road tomorrow.
"It won't be ideal for the ground to get any faster, but we'll see how it rides."
Arkell also revealed there was minimal difference between the far and stands' side based on GoingStick readings – 6.8 stands' side and 6.9 far side – and doesn't expect there to be a significant bias in Saturday's Stewards' Cup.
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