….Mr James, a mega hit for Manfred Mann in 1966 leads us in to today’s action, which comes from Ascot and York.

Undoubted highlight, at 3.35, is the Group 1 King George V1 And Queen Elizabeth Qipco Stakes which has a stellar field of six, headed in the market by Irish Derby winner Westover at 13-8.

Joint second in at 3-1 is Mishriff, and we feel this globetrotter is the value bet.

Most watchers felt that Mishriff should have won the Eclipse last time out, the 5-y-o’s first run for four months, after which the owner severed his relationship with David Egan, which is why today we have James Doyle to do the steering. Has to be delivered just right, but trust Popeye and have a win bet.

Televised action starts with the Princess Margaret Keeneland Stakes at 1.50, a race in which it is very difficult to get away from the chances of the favourite Lezoo.

Ralph‘s baby girl won her first two before coming off second best in a barging match with Mawj in the Group 2 Duchess Of Cambridge Stakes at Newmarket and there is nothing visible in the form of today’s opposition that come anywhere near that. Potential improvers abound but Lezoo is well worth a bash at 13-8.

At 2.25, the Longines Valiant Stakes has what appears to be another strong market leader with Roger Varian‘s Zanbaq.

An unlucky second in the Sandringham Stakes at Royal Ascot followed an easy win at Haydock and this 3-y-o should take all the beating in this weak looking Group 3. Have a decent bet at 7-4.

The Moet & Chandon International Stakes at 3.00 is one of two ‘silly’ handicaps on the box today, with all the usual suspects lining up and more cross form lines than you can shake a stick at.

With ‘who’s turn is it today?’ firmly to the forefront, we suggest modest each way bets on Aratus at 10-1 and King Zain at 16-1 and hope.

Over at York, the other ‘silly’ handicap opens the card, this one a 5f sprint for Jump Jockeys (would you believe).

2.05 is the time and the Sky Bet Jump Jockeys’ Nunthorpe is the name of this nonsense – oh well, if we must – each way Stone Circle at 12-1 and Albegone at 14-1.

Another sprint awaits at 2.40, the Sky Bet Dash Handicap with a field of 15.

At 11-2 the field this is clearly very open but our two darts both have good chances, so it’s Nationwide at 7-1 and Venturous at 11-1, both each way.

The Sky Bet York Stakes at 3.15 will be won, we think, by a horse starting with the word ‘Dubai’, but we can’t choose between Future and Honour so we’ll give it the swerve.

Next week will be ‘Glorious’.


Mishriff 3.35 Ascot 2pts win @ 3-1

Lezoo 1.50 Ascot 4pts win @ 13-8

Zanbaq 2.25 Ascot 4pts win @ 7-4

Aratus 3.00 Ascot 1pt e/w @ 10-1 (6 places)

King Zain 3.00 Ascot 1pt e/w @ 16-1 (6 places)

Stone Circle 2.05 York 1pt e/w @ 12-1 (6 places)

Albegone 2.05 York 1pt e/w @ 14-1 (6 places)

Nationwide 2.40 York 1pt e/w @ 7-1 (5 places)

Venturous 2.40 York 1pt e/w @ 11-1 (5 places)

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