Skip to content

Hawk’s 2014 Royal Ascot – Day Two Preview and Selections

June 18, 2014

The second day of Royal Ascot is upon us, and I hope to build on what was a solid foundation yesterday. Our best result was Stepper Point finishing second in the King’s Stand Stakes at $23 the place in Hong Kong, but due to the flop of Shea Shea the Double Trio went begging…and that was a costly failure.

Anyway, today is a new day, so hopefully we can find a couple more winners today.

GROUP 3 JERSEY STAKES (7f)

Kingman looks a top, top three-year-old – and that was the case before his St James’s Palace Stakes victory. So I’m going to take a line through his Irish 2000 Guineas win for a guide here, as that looks a strong formline at this stage.

Coming here out of the Irish 2000 Guineas are MUSTAJEEB (third), BIG TIME (fifth), GREAT WHITE EAGLE (sixth) and MICHAELMAS (seventh). And of those, I’m going to go with Big Time, who was first up into the race and plugged away on the soft going for a well-beaten fifth. The step back in trip on top of the ground should suit far better, so I’m confident he’ll run a race at 12-1 or so.

Mustajeeb looks the danger for mine. Always be wary of Dermot Weld bringing one over, especially for the resurgent Sheikh Hamdan, and on his Irish 2000 Guineas run he looks right in this.

The Queen’s MUSICAL COMEDY is stepping up in class and trip but I think is capable of handling both, while the French raider REDBROOK for Alain de Royer-Dupre also looks a chance.

Must say, purely on name – going back to the days where I knew nothing about racing – a win to WALTZING MATILDA would be welcomed ahead of Australia’s clash with the Netherlands at the World Cup tonight.

7 – BIG TIME
5 – MUSTAJEEB
14 – MUSICAL COMEDY
18 – REDBROOK

GROUP 2 QUEEN MARY STAKES (5f)

Again, I’m left completely confused by British juvenile form, so I’ll keep this short and sweet.

American trainer Wesley Ward has become renowned for his trans-Atlantic raids on the juvenile riches at Royal Ascot, and he impressed again yesterday when Hootenanny won the Windsor Castle Stakes. I think he can add a second win for the carnival with SPANISH PIPEDREAM, who won very impressively at Keeneland in late April.

It’s by no means a walkover though – Ed Lynam is another looking for his second win after Sole Power’s King’s Stand Stakes win yesterday, and he looks to have a strong chance in ANTHEM ALEXANDER. She toyed with her rivals at Tipperary last start and a repeat will see her go close.

HARRY’S DANCER looks some chance of adding another success for John Quinn and Al Shaqab Racing after The Wow Signal’s Coventry success, while TIGGY WIGGY looks best of the rest.

21 – SPANISH PIPEDREAM
4 – ANTHEM ALEXANDER
11 – HARRY’S DANCER
22 – TIGGY WIGGY

GROUP 1 PRINCE OF WALES’S STAKES (1m 2f)

This race looks a gift for TREVE, especially considering what Cirrus des Aigles has gone on to do since claiming her scalp in the Prix Ganay. She won the Arc ever so impressively last season, and a return to anywhere near that form will see her competitive here.

She doesn’t look too much of a betting proposition, though, at the current 4/6 on offer, so I’d be going with THE FUGUE each way as a punter. 8/1 seems a big price for a mare who is competitive with the best on her day. Each way, all day.

Third’s a toss up between MUKHADRAM and MAGICIAN, with a slight leaning to the former.

8 – TREVE
7 – THE FUGUE
3 – MUKHADRAM
2 – MAGICIAN

GROUP 2 DUKE OF CAMBRIDGE STAKES (1m)

An open race for the mares, with some talented horses here.

That said, if she returns in peak form, I think SKY LANTERN would be close to my best for the week. Last seen when failing in the Hong Kong Mile, she’d built up a good record over the mile before that with wins in the English 1000 Guineas, Coronation Stakes and Sun Chariot Stakes – and she probably should have beaten Elusive Kate in the Falmouth Stakes too. I’m happy to take her here and I think she’ll prove a tough nut to crack.

INTEGRAL did finish a length behind Sky Lantern in the Sun Chariot Stakes, has five pounds up her sleeve here and does have the benefit of one run under her belt, but I still think Sky Lantern was clearly superior – that length could easily have been more. That said, she does look a clear second pick.

For third, I’m going to go with Godolphin’s second-stringer CERTIFY ahead of their main chance ESOTERIQUE, while GIFTED GIRL looks next best.

1 – SKY LANTERN
8 – INTEGRAL
2 – CERTIFY
6 – ESOTERIQUE

ROYAL HUNT CUP (1m)

A 30 runner mile handicap is enough to strike fear in my heart. The last two years, my selections have run 17th and 23rd, but that was always going to be the case after finding the winner in 2011 – a horse that I’d become very familiar with in Australia called Julienas.

Right down the bottom, the emerging ABSEIL in the Khalid Abdullah colours looks the hardest to beat but he is 9/2 in a 30 runner handicap, so I’ll be looking for a couple to get the better of him.

Hugo Palmer has lofty targets in mind for SHORT SQUEEZE, with the Cox Plate on the horse’s agenda. For the horse to make it into the field for a Cox Plate, though, he’d have to win this well and then make the step up to Group company, all within a few months. It’s a tough ask, but the horse does appear capable of making the transition. He progressed nicely last season, and although I wish he had a run under his belt, I’m happy to have something on him here.

TALES OF GRIMM is always around the mark in these sorts of races and may have found a race to suit at a big price. Probably a tad on the short side distance-wise, but worth something each way.

STIRRING BALLAD hasn’t been seen since failing on this day last year, but on his form prior to that he’s some chance and this looks to have been the plan all along, while Abseil has to go in.

Next best HERE COMES WHEN.

5 – SHORT SQUEEZE
11 – TALES OF GRIMM
27 – STIRRING BALLAD
29 – ABSEIL

LISTED SANDRINGHAM HANDICAP (1m)

Another almost impossible race, a 25 runner handicap for the less exposed three-year-old fillies.

Worth a throw at the stumps though, so going to have something on MIDNITE ANGEL at a big price near the bottom, from MUTEELA, ODISSEIA and PSYCHOMETRY.

But really, a case could be made for nearly all of these horses and it may be better to watch. Or, in my case, have a small each way wager to have something to cheer home.

20 – MIDNITE ANGEL
11 – MUTEELA
17 – ODISSEIA
22 – PSYCHOMETRY

No comments yet

Share your thoughts

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: