Day 4 of the Royal Ascot race-fest may see most of the prize money fleeing these shores in the direction of Oirland, with the Leprechaun nation set to farm the main events – maybe.
A certain Mr O’Brien certainly looks to have a bit of a stranglehold on the opening Albany Stakes at 2.30, with his two representatives installed as first and second favourites. Our preference is for Just Wonderful, a once raced daughter of Dansili, whose win at the Curragh last month was enhanced by the third just being touched off in the Queen Mary here on Wednesday.
Available at a palatable 9-4, a win bet is recommended.
Best of the home team should be Main Edition, trained by Braveheart – this progeny of Zoffany putting up a sparkling performance last time out when beating the boys at Goodwood, despite carrying a penalty for her previous win and, to get us off to a good start, we also suggest an each way bet at 6-1.
The Group 2 King Edward VII Stakes at 3.05 has nine runners and you-know-who has the favourite in Delano Roosevelt at 3-1. ‘Fresh’ from finishing 6th in The Derby, we will continue to follow Group 1 form and back this one as well.
The first Group 1 race on the card is the Commonwealth Cup at 3.40, with a field of 22, spread over the width of the track. The perceived draw bias against the lowly drawn may come into play here so we reluctantly pass over the claims of Equilateral in favour of Sioux Nation, which can be backed at 4-1.
This beastie is 4 from 5 on fast ground, including the Group 1 Phoenix Stakes last season and will take the beating today. With ¼ odds on offer, we suggest a safe-ish each way clobber.
The Coronation Stakes at 4.20 is well named, as it features the winners of the French, Irish and English 1000 Guineas in opposition and, in keeping with today’s theme, we go for Alpha Centauri, gutsy winner of the Irish version and available as a win bet at 7-2.
As has become the custom, two ‘impossible’ handicaps close the card, with the Sandringham Stakes at 5.00 being the most problematic. With 29 3-y-o fillies charging down the straight mile, all we can suggest is to take advantage of the difference in rating systems and back Hence each way at 12-1. No prizes for guessing who trains this one.
The end-of-day Duke Of Edinburgh Stakes only has 18 runners, so is easy peasy – not.
Two against the field and, hopefully, a home win with Count Calabash at 9-1 and Sir Chauvelin at a juicy 40-1 are the suggestions.
Back tomorrow for the finale of an exhausting week.
Just Wonderful 2.30 Ascot win @ 9-4 Betbright
Main Edition 2.30 Ascot e/w @ 6-1 BetVictor (4 places)
Delano Roosevelt 3.05 Ascot win @ 3-1 Coral
Sioux Nation 3.40 Ascot e/w @ 4-1 Ladbrokes (4 places)
Alpha Centauri 4.20 Ascot win @ 7-2 Betway
Hence 5.00 Ascot e/w @ 12-1 SkyBet (6 places)
Count Calabash 5.35 Ascot e/w @ 9-1 SkyBet (5 places)
Sir Chauvelin 5.35 Ascot e/w @ 40-1 PaddyPower (5 places)