Royal Ascot’s fourth day begins with the competitive Albany Stakes (2.30) for two-year-old fillies over six furlongs. There are no less than eight unbeaten fillies in the field that have only raced once, making this an extremely difficult one to predict. John Gosden rarely runs a horse in these types of races unless he is sure that they are up to the mark so it could be worth taking a chance with Newfangled.
The second race on the card is the King Edward VII Stakes (3.05), often referred to as the Ascot Derby. This used to be a popular race for horses that had not quite managed to win the Epsom classic and Astrology represents that race here after finishing third to the mighty Camelot. Thought Worthy finished behind him in fourth place that day and re-opposes but logic suggests that the O’Brien runner will again come out on top. The Coronation Stakes at 3.45 is the day’s feature race with classic fillies racing over a mile. Homecoming Queen was an astonishing winner of the 1000 Guineas at Newmarket but was subsequently beaten by Samitar in the Irish equivalent. Although only eighth at Newmarket, Mick Channon’s Laugh Out Loud could be a threat to them both as she has gone on to win at York and in France in the style of a useful performer.
The Wolferton Handicap at 4.25 features two progressive handicappers in Gatewood and Danadana. It would be no surprise to see these two fight out the finish as both have the potential to go on and make group horses in the future. The Queen’s Vase at 5.00 is a staying race for three-year-olds, sometimes used as a stepping stone to the St Leger. Aidan O’Brien has a great record in this race so his Athens has to be respected.
The closing race is the Buckingham Palace Stakes at 5.35, a fiercely competitive handicap over seven furlongs. The likely favourite is Primeaval who takes in this race in preference to the one mile Hunt Cup and the hint is worth taking. He is ridden by the hugely popular Hayley Turner and is certain to have a lot of supporters. Sir Henry Cecil opened the meeting in great style with the sensational eleven length victory of Frankel and he will be hoping for a good run from Emilio Largo in this.
Ladbrokes have early prices on all the races at this week’s Royal Ascot meeting including a number of special bets on the Australian mare Black Caviar, seeking her 22nd straight victory in the Jubilee Stakes on the closing day of the meeting.
Author Profile: Harvey Mayson+