FRANKEL BACKERS ‘BUYING INTO A MYTH’: The greatest horse in the world with his legend status confirmed today, or a 2012 myth? Read Daqman’s irreverent view of the world champion, and how it all began with a chat in a wine bar.

19.0, 17.0, 16.0, 14.5, 10.5, 10.0, 9.2: These are some of the value offers peeled from the BETDAQ orange as Daqman bids for jackpot returns and a fantasy lay.

He’s Farhh and away Frankel’s toughest opponent. Though the race has cut up to a quartet, Frankel still has a tough customer to beat today in Farhh. I sincerely hope so. I want to see a race not a procession.

The lack of opposition in the Sussex Stakes – be it cowardice or entrepreneurial failure (see yesterday’s column) or both – is all the more a bitter pill when you see that, after Black Caviar’s first 11 straight wins of her 22, she had fields of 14, 10, nine (twice) and eight (twice) against her. If Frankel wins again, he’ll have to walk over unless they boost the place money of his next race.

He needs three more successes to match the 14 of Nearco, granddaddy of the world’s greatest sire, Northern Dancer; five more to catch the mighty Ribot; and he’s seven behind Eclipse, the horse we still honour as one of the all-time greats.

Should Frankel be mentioned in the same breath as these? His 140 rating is the highest in the world, and in some ways I regret the idea I put to the International Racing Bureau in the early 1980s over the usual Fleet Street liquid lunch in a wine bar.

How can we have a world championship, when the horses don’t meet? they said. They don’t have to, I replied. Compile an international table of their ratings. Whoever’s on top is king.

But is he? Does Frankel really deserve 140? Does the horse he keeps beating, Excelebration, deserve even 125, when he’s only ‘earned it’ by running second to Frankel three times and third once? If only we could have a true-run race today, Farhh should help us decide on the real value of Frankel’s crown jewels.

It seems ludicrous to me that Nathaniel rates only 126 (one pound more than Excelebration? You have got to be kidding) after winning one King George and losing a second to the Arc winner by a nose.

Farhh ran Nathaniel to half a length in the Eclipse and has officially improved 22lb since the Spring. On Farhh alone hangs the reputation of Frankel as England’s best, never mind the world’s best.

But, as I’ve said, we would need a true-run race. No longer does Frankel drag-race from the stalls like he has a rocket where the sun don’t shine. And we have the prospect of Farhh boiling over.

He reared and lost ground at Ascot – or might have finished closer to another top-class horse, So You Think – and he was agitated, though got away all right, in the Eclipse.

As far as we know (no more puns – Ed), he needs some cut in the ground, as is suggested by his breeding (by Pivotal). Granted a decent surface, and a calm passage round the parade ring, he might just give Frankel a race today.

2.00 Goodwood Stakes: Horses that have been hurdling have won this stamina test five years in a row. That’s a box ticked by Beyond, Cape Express, Orsippus and Veiled, who won the Ascot Stakes over this kind of trip last year but was well behind in it this, when Nafaath was third.

Collateral form between the 2011 Ascot Stakes and the Cesarewitch puts Veiled a few lengths in front of Never Can Tell but getting a pound today, and it may be that the soft ground was against her in this year’s Ascot race; she was eased down.

The local horse, Trovare, and the Johnston runner, Hurricane Higgins, could be surprise packets; Romeo Montague is on the up; and Seaside Sizzler has plenty of stamina.

It’s a matter of value, and ‘too big’ on my pricing up are Veiled at 16.0 on BETDAQ this morning and Never Can Tell at 17.0. Hurricane Higgins is likely to come in from 20.0.

2.35 Goodwood (Vintage Stakes): A favourites race, and potentially an appropriate winner in Olympic Glory, who found only the spectacular Dawn Approach too good at Royal Ascot.

But Birdman almost grabbed ‘Glory’ that day, is better off at the weights, because of Olympic Glory’s penalty, and is the one of the two who has won on a sounder surface. How can he then be 9.2 on BETDAQ this morning to Olympic Glory’s 4.4?

The answer is that Richard Hannon thinks Olympic Glory was underdone at home before the feast of Ascot and the fully cooked version today will serve it up to them.

Runners with the penalty have won twice and lost twice in the last six years, one of the successes being a Hannon runner, King Torus (2010).

Stepping between the two corners in this rematch of Olympic Glory and Birdman is Ghurair for Team Gosden, and he’s at the centre of the ring – and the BETDAQ market – this morning.

Ghurair has won only his maiden and is an American-bred. Could be anybody’s race but I’ll have a pound of that 9.2 Birdman: I still think it’s the value in a value race (100% round book on BETDAQ as I write).

3.10 Goodwood (Sussex Stakes): Taking 20-1 on Frankel isn’t buying money; it’s buying into myth. ‘I was there when the Queen jumped from the helicopter’ (or rather, didn’t). I was there when Rupert Murdoch said he was ‘humble’ (or rather, he’s an old Twitterer). That’s the sort of thing 2012 is all about.

And, at 1.06 in the green this morning, you could lay Frankel to massive liquidity (even after I struck with my tenner!), and have a pound on Farhh at 19.0 in the orange. Go on, be different: Frankel won’t know you’re a traitor and, anyway, Daniel Craig doesn’t know where you live.

3.45 Goodwood: The favourite – Rule Book, says the Racing Post – has a bad record in this, but surely Scatter Dice will front the market for Johnson-Egan after that Landaman romp yesterday.

Scatter Dice, a front-runner, has got the break from stall 5 and, though she won only four days ago, put two wins together inside a week in the Spring.

Sir Michael Stoute’s Regal Flush (2007) had won only his maiden before taking this race, and Mawaqeet will be fancied by some to do the same, but will he again respond to the visors as he did at Hamilton?

The local runners, Trend Is My Friend and Goodwood Atlantis, were first and third at Sandown, with ‘Atlantis’ more likely to appreciate this trip and more likely to improve, as John Dunlop was badly out of form then.

But I’m choosing between Handsome Man and Sir Graham Wade, or rather not choosing between them: BETDAQ can give me such value offers – 10.5 and 14.5 respectively – that I can dutch or, as I do on here, go for a fixed profit-yield.

Handsome Man was apprentice-ridden when going down narrowly at Royal Ascot and now has Frankie back on board; the grey ‘Sir Graham’ is in that Landaman mould of lightly raced and ‘could be anything’ off a good mark.

5.25 Galway Plate: As with Mark Johnston at Goodwood, Ballybrit is the preserve of Dermot Weld. He brings a novice winner at the festival last year, Daffern Seal, fresh to the Plate, and only 10.0 because of yer man’s reputation (he’s winning every day at the meeting so far).

Willie Mullins and Gordon Elliott may have better novices in Blackstairmountain and Carlito Brigante, while Edward O’Grady’s strong team is headed in my opinion by Out Now, second to Seabass, then runner-up in the Irish Grand National. Out Now is the one who won’t mind the ground.

WIN-30 JACKPOT: 2pts win VEILED, 1.8pts win NEVER CAN TELL and 1.5pts win HURRICANE HIGGINS (2.00 Goodwood)
BET 2.4pts win BIRDMAN (2.35 Goodwood)
LAY 10pts FRANKEL and BET 1.1pts win FARHH (3.10 Goodwood)
BET 2pts win HANDSOME MAN and 1.5pts win SIR GRAHAM WADE (3.45 Goodwood)
BET 3pts win OUT NOW (5.25 Galway)

* Daqman’s selections are backed to win 20 points (unless otherwise stated) so, if you divide 20 by his stake, you know the Betdaq offer taken at the time of writing.

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