2:30pm Queen Anne Stakes
With two runners rated 120 or higher this looks another typically strong renewal of this race and the 125 rated favourite Toronado was just beaten by Dawn Approach over course and distance in the St James Palace Stakes here last year so sets a high standard. However, he’s far from bullet proof and two Group 1 races on quicker ground have seen him well beaten and whilst he did win the Craven Stakes on the same ground he didn’t need to be at his best to come away from a trio of rivals there whereas performing a few lbs under his best today could see a couple of rivals ahead at the line.
Soft Falling Rain has not particularly delivered on his promise when coming to these shores and whilst he should go well once more, he has gone off favourite in four of his last five races and won just one so I feel he’s not a suitable prospect for backing. It’s likely second favourite Verrazano will come on for his run behind Olympic Glory but he also has to reverse the form with Tullius and considering that rival is available at least 12/1 compared to just 10/3 there would definitely only be one horse I’d be playing from the pair.
Anodin at nice each ways odds is where my money will be going as the selection was just beaten a short head by Olympic Glory at Longchamp last season when the pair were soundly beaten by Maxios. He then finished a few lengths ahead of that rivals when finding only the classy Cirrus Des Aigles too much and since that winner has since won the Coronation Cup at Epsom it looks a strong level of form.
3:05 Coventry Stakes
I’ve prepared some speed ratings above for this Group 2 juvenile sprint as with so many of these races it’s difficult to judge the depth of the form with very few cross overs at the early stages of the horses careers. Favourite War Envoy holds the best rating for a debut when clocking 110 at Naas, but was beaten by Kool Kompany without any genuine excuse last time out and I wouldn’t be a backer.
Adaay and Kool Kompany have been very consistent on the clock but I think Cappella Sansevero has an outstanding chance based both on these figures and his current form book. Didn’t have to work too hard on either his debut win or his latest win and those two sandwich just getting home ahead of Dick Whittington. The softer ground might have played a part in him getting tired late on but the runner up filled the same spot on next outing behind the 4th and then won convincingly at weekend. Additionally 3rd placed Toscanini went one better when just finding Kool Kompany too good but managed to finish ahead of War Envoy.
I’m also keen to locate a bit of each way value in a fairly wide open contest and the Richard Hannon second string of Dr No appeals nicely at 22/1 looking like a solid improver. Of the once raced horses I most like the look of Angelic Lord who gave key experience away to Al Freej and should come on plenty for that first time out in.
3:45pm King’s Stand Stakes
With Ancil, Stepper Point and Justice Day drawn in stalls 1, 4 & 5 it looks like there will be plenty of pace from the lower side of the stalls. Shea Shea from 2 will look to tuck in behind the early pace whilst from a middle draw will be held on to for as long as possible. The favourite Hot Streak is coming out of stall 11 and might just be a little alone from that side of the draw as those around him don’t generally race up close with pace.
Hot Streak was beaten by Sole Power last month but then won when in control from the front at Haydock a couple of weeks ago but my concern is that the horses he beat that day have all been dispensed of by Sole Power previously. In fact Sole Power has met runners in this field 17 times so far and beaten 15 of them home, with his only conqueror from this field being Shea Shea. Both of those times could arguably be excused with the first being over 6 furlongs whilst the latest was on more unsuitable good to soft ground.
The straight course is good and could arguably ride on the fast side tomorrow with the decent weather we’ve had and Sole Power won this race last year with a blistering turn of foot. His optimum conditions are a good or quick surface and a strong pace to aim at and that looks guaranteed tomorrow so I’m happy to back Sole Power to land back to back wins in this race.
5:00pm Ascot Stakes
Since switching to Charles Byrne’s stable, Domination has been back twice with his first visit landing a Cesarewitch trial in 2012 and his second visit seeing him unable to land the race itself last year. The softer ground over such a distance might have been the excuse as his record on genuinely good ground in staying races is exceptionally good with his form figures over such trips being 1216111.
Looks to have had a nice preparation for this race when seen at Leopardstown last month over 12 furlongs on soft ground. Kept at the back of the pack he was never in the race and never asked any serious questions coming home under his own steam. That should have brought him up to race fitness and conditions look ideal for a big run from him.
2:30pm Ascot – ANODIN (1pt e/w @ 16/1)
3:05pm Ascot – CAPPELLA SANSEVERO (2pts @ 9/1)
3:05pm Ascot – DR NO (0.5pts e/w @ 28/1)
3:05pm Ascot – ANGELIC LORD (0.5pts e/w @ 33/1)
3:45pm Ascot – SOLE POWER (3pts @ 9/2)$
5:00pm Ascot – DOMINATION (1pt @ 12/1)