There is not a more prestigious race course than Ascot in England and the world’s most prestigious race meet is here. We are talking about Royal Ascot – the ultimate dream of every horse owner is to have a starter here – and meet the Queen.
This year the racing will be without fans which of course will be a loss for all the gossip magazines. Pro-tip. The English Embassy in all countries have a lottery for tickets to Royal Ascot. It is almost as valuable as the american green card lottery.
Normally we would have had the Derby and a lot of other races before Royal Ascot. This year we will find form scarce. A lot of runners will be making their seasonal debut at Royal Ascot so it is very much worth to study if a horse goes well fresh and if a trainer will have them ready or not at the first time of asking. It is important to look at the draw at Royal Ascot. It is considered a galloping track, but the bends are a little sharp and the run-in is short, about 2.5 furlongs. As most races in England will be run at a steady pace it can prove important to know which horse will be prominent or not.
As you can see from the picture above, a lot of races will be held over the straight course. The first race on Tuesday is a new handicap over 7 straight furlongs. 66 horses were entered for the race, but the maximum amount of runners is 24. Talk about a cavalry charge!
William Buick and Charlie Appleby can’t do no wrong these days and 12/1 is a nice price for the top-weight 1 First Contact (Dark Angel). He wasn’t beaten much in a Listed last fall and was lowered to a rating of 105 making this race a perfect target. First Contact have a couple of placings in Group 1 and Group 2 races and this opposition should be more to his liking. Capable of going well fresh we like him and though the distance is on the shorter side, First Contact likes to lead. A beautiful each way bet. The other horse to consider is 7 Kaeso (Excelebration). Here the distance is perfect and he will benefit immensely by having champion Oisin Murphy in the saddle instead of Hollie Doyle. Kaeso is much better off with likely jolly 5 Daarik (Tamayuz) who is bad value at 5/1.
The next race is the Group 1 Queen Anne. Run over a straight mile. It should go to 3 Circus Maximus (Galileo) who won the St James Palace Stakes (Gr.1) here last year. 9/4 is not good, but what you get. We liked the prep run by 15 Billesdon Brook (Champs Elysees) who showed she retains her ability from her glory days. She ran a good race here in the Coronation Cup (Gr.1) 2018 and will arrive late to the scene. She is good value at 16/1.
After these two races the temperature will rise and we be able to watch some good three-year-olds. Not much value here but in the Kings Stands Stakes (Gr.1) is race number five on the card. A stiff five furlongs and only 11 top sprinters are entered. 1 Battaash (Dark Angel) is a heavy favorite but is beatable! He likes it ultra fast but can be very headstrong before the race. He might benefit from the lack of fans but he is deep odds on and we like 2 Equilateral (Equiano) who ran well in Dubai. 16/1 is a gift from the bookmakers. Equilateral will be in touch and hopefully pass the leaders in the last furlong.
The Duke of Cambridge (Gr.2) follows. Fillies and Mares will fly home over a straight mile and our lungs will support Swedish pride Benny Andersson of ABBA fame (Chess Racing). We have actually talked horses with this songwriter for many years and 6 Lavender’s Blue (Sea The Stars) is a good one out of Chess Racings own Beatrice Aurore. The prize is skinny enough so will leave the window alone in this race.
The last race is certainly something extra for an american audience. It is a handicap with 20 horses and the distance is two and a half miles! 4 kilometers. 11 Blue Laureate (Poet’s Voice) is trained by Ian Williams who is shrewd when it comes to races like this. He has secured promising Cieren Fallon in the saddle and 14/1 is a really nice prize. There will be some classy hurdlers here, most notably 1 Verdana Blue (Getaway) winner of the prestigeous Christmas Hurdle. Verdana Blue goes well fresh and has Ryan Moore in the irons. 7/2 is the current prize and it might shorten up during the day.
This is it for tuesday, but the meeting will keep on going for four more days and we will be back with more ideas.