paisley from drone

Travel eight miles south of Paisley into the East Renfrewshire countryside, and you will find yourself at the Uplawmoor stables of racehorse trainer Jim Goldie. In this yard, the late blooming Euchen Glen has taken his form at the age of eight to a level where a tilt at the Champion Stakes at Ascot has been mooted.

There is an old saying in the sport that shrewd trainers, and Goldie definitely fits into that category, don’t go tilting at windmills with their horses. Euchen Glen, a gelding by 2007 Epsom Derby winner Authorized, was seen as little more than a handicapper early on often running his best races at Ayr but could now be heading on a 920-mile round trip to Glorious Goodwood at the end of this month.

Goldie has always been prepared to run his horse over a variety of different distances. In a 39-race career to date, Euchen Glen has raced at almost every trip between a mile and an extended two-and-a-quarter miles. There are far worse labels for a racehorse than versatile.

Euchen Glen shot to minor fame with victory in the John Smith’s Cup, a Heritage Handicap held at York, but any hopes of building on that 2018 success were curtailed by 701 days off the track injured. He had to resume racing off a then career-high mark of 107.

It was a challenge, but one Goldie was up for based on the races Euchen Glen ran in after returning at Doncaster from his problems. He posted improved efforts with each outing in Heritage Handicaps like the Old Newton Cup at Haydock and when bidding to regain the John Smith’s Cup, then outran odds of 150/1 when fifth in the Group 1 Goodwood Cup before filling the same spot in the Ebor Handicap back at York last summer.

After dropping in the weights to a mark of 101, Euchen Glen got another notable win. It came at Haydock in the Old Borough Cup yet he wasn’t done. Following a fine fourth when only beaten about three lengths by subsequent Champion Stakes hero Addeybb at Ayr, a first Group race success was a wonderful surprise for Euchen Glen.

That came in the rearranged Cumberland Lodge Stakes at York. He then followed-up under a penalty in the Group 3 St Simon Stakes at Newbury. Those end of season assignments lack the same prestige as a race for the grade as the Brigadier Gerard Stakes at Sandown. Euchen Glen went there on his third start of this season, defying a 20/1 starting price and cruising to victory.

Another win at Listed level around the Esher venue under a penalty at the Eclipse meeting leaves Goldie open-minded and with options for a horse who is running his best races deep into his career. With an early closing entry in the Ebor again, Euchen Glen could easily run elsewhere before that and the Group 3 Glorious Stakes at Goodwood for older horses may appeal to connections.

If Goldie and owner Willie Johnstone decide to take in that test over an easy mile-and-a-half, then don’t be surprised if Euchen Glen is among the Glorious Goodwood day 4 predictions given by experts. He ran at Royal Ascot earlier this year, so competing at major Flat festivals down south holds no fears for this battle-hardened horse. 

Euchen Glen is a great advert for keeping horses in training on the Flat. Goldie still believes he is best with cut in the ground, so an autumn campaign still lies ahead. Those working him on the gallops near Paisley can dream big.