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Panther can score again for Owen in Goodwood Cup

Brown Panther has been better than ever this season and looks to have outstanding claims of winning today’s Goodwood Cup (3.10) for the second year running.

Part-owned by former England striker Michael Owen, the son of Shirocco bolted up by 3 1/2 lengths 12 months ago and has raised his game to a new level this season.

The six-year-old easily won the Group 3 Ormonde Stakes at Chester on seasonal reappearance, and followed up in facile fashion in the Group 3 Henry II Stakes at Sandown.

Brown Panther then put up arguably a career-best performance in the Group 1 Gold Cup at Ascot, where he held every chance two from home until weakening late on to finish a five length fourth of 13 to Leading Light.

The 2m 4f trip seemed to stretch Brown Panther’s stamina to the limit, and the drop back to 2m this afternoon is sure to suit.

Tom Dascombe’s charge was also far from disgraced over 1m 6f last time out when runner-up in a Group 2 contest at Longchamp, and it would be be a poignant victory for part-owner and breeder Owen as Brown Panther’s mother Treble Heights died on Monday aged 15

The two obvious dangers are Cavalryman and Estimate.

The former is trained by Saeed Bin Suroor and has won two of his three starts this season.

The eight-year-old showed that he was capable of still be competitive at this level when beating Hillstar by a neck in the 1m 4f Group 2 Princess of Wales’ Stakes at Newmarket earlier in the month, and is just as effective at today’s trip.

The Godolphin-owned son of Halling has a touch of class and looks sure to go well despite his advancing years.

Estimate finished two places in front of Brown Panther in the Gold Cup, a contest which she had won the previous year, but had a gruelling race.

The Sir Michael Stoute trained mare, who is owned by The Queen, went down by just a neck to Leading Light after a ding dong tussle on what was her first run for 243 days.

The five-year-old has not had long to get over those exertions, and the big fear must be that she will “bounce” given her well documented training problems.

If she doesn’t, then the daughter of Monsun is a massive player in the hands of in-form jockey Ryan Moore.