Horses To Follow » Traffic Guard

Traffic Guard

Traffic Guard’s day is surely not far off now. While he did well to finish third in the Group 3 Coutts Glorious Stakes at Goodwood last Friday, he should have finished closer and could even have won. After travelling well in the rear off what was only a sedate pace, he was travelling better than anything at the two-furlong pole but he just got squeezed out as Redwood moved up on his outside, Tom Queally had to take a tug and start again, and he ran on really well to take third place, closing all the way to the line. If he had got out before Redwood boxed him in, or if he had been making his move from behind Redwood, he may well have won.

All the focus in the aftermath of the race about the scrimmaging that developed was on the favourite Duncan, who finished fourth and who actually wasn’t unlucky at all, who was almost certainly just the fourth best horse in the race, and Traffic Guard’s run may have gone under the radar as a result. Although Traffic Guard’s last three starts came over 10 furlongs, he is probably at his best these days over a mile and a half with a strong pace. It looked like he might get his strong pace here – which appears to be a lot less common in the top races these days than it used to be – but Kingdom Of Fife and Golden Sword allowed Frankie Dettori dictate it on Whispering Gallery, with the result that the pace was no better than fair, and they did steady it going up the hill and early in the home straight.

Traffic Guard should remain under-rated – he was a 16/1 shot here, although he was backed from an opening show of 22/1 – and he will be of interest when he has his conditions next. He is at least up to winning in this grade when he has his conditions. He is a classy performer. It is a long time ago, but he was only beaten a half a length by New Approach in the 2008 Irish Champion Stakes.

30th July 2010