THE outstanding Frankel, who won the race last year, heads 37 entries for the £300,000 Group One QIPCO Sussex Stakes, which is staged on the second day of Glorious Goodwood, on Wednesday, August 1.
Run over a mile, the QIPCO Sussex Stakes is the fifth race in the mile division of the QIPCO British Champions Series.
Frankel is owned by Khalid Abdulla, trained by Sir Henry Cecil and has been ridden by Tom Queally on all his starts. The four-year-old Galileo colt is unbeaten in 10 races, six at Group One level, and is the best racehorse in the world with a rating of 136 in the latest World Thoroughbred Rankings.
He returned to action in the mile Group One JLT Lockinge Stakes at Newbury on May 19, when he easily brushed aside his old rival Excelebration to score impressively by five lengths.
Among Frankel’s Group One victories in 2011 was his devastating five-length victory over five-time Group One scorer and top older miler Canford Cliffs in the QIPCO Sussex Stakes, a contest termed the ‘Duel on the Downs’.
Canford Cliffs, who won the Sussex Stakes in 2010, has now retired to stud but his trainer Richard Hannon, who also won the race in 2003 with Reel Buddy and has collected the Dick Hern Trophy for the leading trainer at Goodwood in each of the past four years, has four entries - Dubawi Gold, Harbour Watch, Strong Suit and Trumpet Major.
Strong Suit was on the scoresheet at Glorious Goodwood in 2011 with a comfortable success over Red Jazz in the Group Two bet365 Lennox Stakes over seven furlongs, while Harbour Watch landed the Group Two Audi Richmond Stakes over six furlongs at the same meeting and is unbeaten in three starts.
David Redvers, racing manager to Qatar Racing Limited, the owners of Strong Suit and part-owners of Harbour Watch, said today: “Strong Suit is definitely being aimed at the QIPCO Sussex Stakes - it’s his big target if everything goes right for him. We know he enjoys the track at Goodwood and we think the race will be perfect for him.”