Royal Ascot Ante Post Tips And Trends
I’ve sifted through a fair mountain of data to research some trend markers for Royal Ascot and for the majority of races they aren’t that much help but there are a few races which have some strong trend data and I’ve analysed these below and provided my tips at the bottom of the page.
Tuesday 18th June 3:45pm – St James Palace Stakes
(1m Group 1 3yo)
A few simple trends to whittle down the current 14 runner field:
Of the 144 runners who have contested this race over the previous 16 years, 97 runners ran in a Group 1 or Group 2 in their last race and provided all 16 winners so we can strike out any not runners this year not doing so (Dundonnell, Jammy Guest, Leitir Mor & Mutin).
Of those running in a Group 1/2 last time out, 40 carried a 50% or better career strike rate to this race and 12 won the race. This leaves just the three market principles, Dawn Approach, Magician & Toronado left matching the criteria.
I’m can’t back 6/4 favourite Dawn Approach on a few statistical grounds:
Only 1 winners from 15 have dropped down to the mile for this race. Just 1 winner from 38 runners finished worse than 4th in their last race, and this is backed up by 1 win from 53 runners who were beaten by more than 3 lengths in their last race.
Out of the remaining two my preference is for Magician who won the Irish 2000 Guineas very comfortably in a good time and is favoured by stronger stats towards those last time out winners, horses coming from the Curragh and officially top rated horses.
Wednesday 19th June 3:45pm – Prince Of Wales’ Stakes
(1m2f Group 1 4yo+)
140 runners have gone to post in this race during the last 16 renewals of this race providing us with a big enough sample to lock in certain trends or profiles. Two that stand out profusely are:
Last Time Out Winner: 11 wins from 50 runners.
Raced in a Class 1 LTO: 12 wins from 100 runners.
A quick combination of the two indicates that 42 runners have contested this race having been a favourite in a Class 1 race last time out providing 10 wins and a further 9 places (+13.76)
Three horses fit this profile; favourite Al Kazeem, Maxios & Mukhadram. Mukhadram got the better of Main Sequence and Miblish on his reappearance but frankly the pair have been exposed in events of similar nature and it doesn’t look the strongest form. Maxios beat Dubai World Cup 3rd Planteur last time out after losing on seasonal debut and that rival has close formlines with a few of the field from that race so I wouldn’t be keen on him.
Al Kazeem looks the only one who fits the bill with top class formlines. His trainer Roger Charlton says he’s a slow maturing type which could explain the upturn in form from his 3yo season but I’d attribute some of that to a more confident rider in James Doyle. Won a Group 2 on reappearance last season before a stress fracture kept him out until his race at Sandown in April this year. He beat Camelot very nicely last time out in the Tattersalls Gold Cup at Curragh and I can’t find any distinguishing negatives about him for the race.
He’s a strong favourite for the race but considering he’s 7/4 whilst Camelot is only 2/1 I’d be backing him all day to confirm the formline.
Wednesday 19th June 5:00pm – Queen Mary Stakes
(5f Group 2 2yo Fillies)
Since it’s transition to a Listed class event, the Marygate Stakes that takes place during York’s Dante meeting has been a significant precursor to this race with 8 runners coming directly from that race to take their chance in the Queen Mary Stakes providing 3 winners and a further two placed fillies.
This year’s winner Beldale Memory (9/4) is unbeaten in her two races to date and has won them without being fully extended which suggests she will be a top class filly. The bookies haven’t got a market up at the moment but I’m convinced she can win this and will be backing her.
Thursday 20th June 3:45pm – Gold Cup
(2m4f Group 1 4yo+)
There are a number of positive trends for this race including:
|Last Time Out Winners||46||8||17.39%||+0.76||1.65%|
|Last Time Out Fav (inc JFav)||52||9||17.31%||+15.76||30.30%|
|LTO Winning Favourites||12||5||41.67%||+17.76||148.00%|
However, the most significant trend I can find is regarding strike rates; of the last 16 renewals of the Ascot Gold Cup 9 have been won by the horses with either the 1st or 2nd highest strike rate in the field (from 35 runners).
In this year’s line up the Dermot Weld pair of Rite Of Passage (80.00%) and Pale Mimosa (60.00%) hold the two highest strike rates. Rite Of Passage won this race in 2010 so his credentials are there for all to see and he’s currently joint favourite, being available to back at 6/1.
Pale Mimosa has a little bit to prove in terms of stamina after fading in the final stages of Prix Chaudany (still only finished 6L back). That was over 15 furlongs and she won on her reappearance at weekend over 14 furlongs, so it’s not certain that she’ll stay although her full-sister, Suailce, won a 2 mile handicap at the end of her 3yo season. However she does meet the first mentioned criteria being a winning favourite last time out, it has to be cautioned that no female from 7 attempts has won this race whilst those who raced over 1m4f in the race previous to this have also drawn a blank from 20 runners.
25/1 is available for Pale Mimosa though and meeting such strong trends I’m willing to back her each way alongside her stablemate Rite Of Passage.
Saturday 22nd June 3:05pm – Hardwicke Stakes
1m4f Group 2 4yo+)
The trends indicate that the Coronation Cup at Epsom has been exceptionally influential on this race. Just 21 runners have come straight from that race at Epsom to contest this and have provided 7 of the last 16 winners; more so none raced in 2011, 2009 or 2000 meaning that when racing runners from Epsom have won 7 from 13 runnings whilst providing an additional 8 of the places.
Better still, a further boost to the influence of the race is that these runners have filled the 1st & 2nd spots 5 times in 2008, 2007, 2004, 2002 & 1999.
This year’s race features three horses who contested the Coronation Cup last time out. The race was won comfortably by St Nicholas Abbey who bypasses Royal Ascot altogether, with Dunaden then clear of Joshua Tree whilst Chamonix tailed off. This latter trio all hold entries for this year’s Hardwicke and on the form the pick simply has to be Dunaden who was some 7 lengths ahead of Joshua Tree at the line and had been eased a touch by Jamie Spencer upon realising St Nicholas Abbey had them well beaten. Market’s haven’t been formed yet but my intention is to back this one as soon as available and I’ll update when so.
Saturday 22nd June – Wokingham Stakes (Heritage Handicap)
(6f Class 2 Handicap 3yo+)
With this big field prestigious handicaps, I firstly try and find something that will narrow the field down significantly. There are currently 104 entries held for this years race and we will have to do a big of downsizing to get an antepost selection; I start with the full field size from the past 16 years as below:
If we filter just those who raced off a higher official mark than their previous race then we see as follows:
|OR Higher than LTO||120||10||8.33%||+25.75||21.46%|
Straight away we have cut out 72% of the field whilst losing only 6 of the 16 winners and we can already see that backing this approach blindly during this race would have resulted in a profit; at this stage though this filter still accounts for 27 of the 104 entries so we need more significance and by filtering out those who did not run in a handicap last time we get:
|Higher OR than LTO Hcp||99||10||10.10%||+46.75||47.22%|
We remove an additional 21 runners who were all luckless in the race (only provided 1 place between them too). The next significant trend is when filtering out horses stepping up from less than 6f:
|Raced over 6f+ LTO||85||10||11.76%||+60.75||71.47%|
This leaves us with just 14 contender’s from the original 104, so I’ve begun to look at the official ratings of the winners left in our sample. One winner raced off a mark of 87 whilst other 9 were rated 96 or higher. Indeed a split between official ratings of 95 and below against 96 and above looks like:
|OR 95 or lower||31||1||3.23%||-10.00||-32.25%|
|OR 96 or above||54||9||16.66%||+70.75||131.02%|
Obviously you can’t conclusively say a horse racing off 96 will win and a horse racing off 95 wll not, but with the places also split in favour of 96 or above by a ratio of 17:6 I’m going to stick with this a guideline (for note 95 rated horses are 0 wins/0 places from 3 runs).
Considering the race looks to have become steadily stronger over the last decade with the bottom weighted horses being rated
I think we have to build in a safety buffer of those who we can be assured will make the field and we definitely have 8 runners who now fit the bill.
It get’s a bit tricky to sort out between this octet, but one particular entry stands out backed up by some very promising stats; Hallelujah. Three females have met the above criteria providing two winners and a placer (Dark Missile in 2007 and Nice One Clare in 2001 both won at 22/1 & 7/1 respectively, whilst Bollin Joanne finished 3rd in 1997 at 12/1). Further more:
|Type||Runs||Wins||Strike Rate||L.S.P||R.O.I||Fin Pos|
|Handicap SR 50%+||4||2||50.00%||+6.25||156.25%||3141|
|Distance (6f) SR 50%+||10||3||30.00%||+34.25||342.50%||3503214171|
|Class 2 SR 50%+||6||3||50.00%||+38.25||637.50%||314116|
As you can see above these indicators have in the past provided plenty of winners and more placers and I’m therefore pretty keen on Hallelujah’s chances, who matches all three, from a trends point of view.
Also form a form perspective she looks to have a very good shout after winning on her reappearance. She won that nicely, produced at the right time by Hayley Turner and held on in the closing stages. The immediate 6 that chased her home all had the advantage of prior race fitness over her and they’ve all run well next time out either making the frame or just outside it (biggest losing distance from any of those 6 next time out is Top Cop by less than 5 lengths in the Epsom ‘Dash’).
Hopefully she’ll come on from that run and trainer James Fanshaw has a fantastic record at this meeting with 8 winners from 39 runners (+47.38 LSP) so this race looks like it will have been a season target form the start.
|18/6||3:45||St James Palace Stakes||MAGICIAN||2pt WIN||7/4|
|19/6||3:45||Prince Of Wales’ Stakes||AL KAZEEM||3pt WIN||2/1|
|19/6||5:00||Queen Mary Stakes||BELDALE MEMORY||3pt WIN||5/2|
|20/6||3:45||Gold Cup||RITE OF PASSAGE||2pt WIN||7/1|
|20/6||3:45||Gold Cup||PALE MIMOSA||1pt E/W||25/1|