No superlative expression can distinctively convey the racing that will take centre stage at Ascot racecourse this coming week. For many, including myself, it is the highlight, the pinnacle of the British racing calendar.

The festival begins on Tuesday 14th June with a host of quality racing on offer including three group 1 events alongside a group 2 and two fierce handicaps. The highlight of day one for me is the King’s Stand Stakes.

Last year the race was won by Goldream trained by the master Robert Cowell. This year is shaping up to be even more competitive and the market is currently headed by both Mecca’s Angel and Profitable. Ground will be key for the chances of Mecca’s Angel (recent rain is a big plus) while Profitable has been a model of progression this year, beating Mecca’s Angel by a head last time out. Next in the market is the American giant Acapulco, He won his prep run very nicely and comes here receiving weight with a massive chance. Goldream returns to defend his title, while other notable runners include the Gosden trained Waady, Haggas trained Muthmir and the Goldphin runner Jungle Cat. Two outsiders that catch my eye are Cotai Glory for Charlie Hills and Aeolus for Ed Walker.

Wednesday’s racing is headed by the Prince of Wales Stakes with the Japanese raider A Shin Hikari a strong favourite, followed by the likeable Time Test and an interesting entry for Goldophin’s Tryster. This isn’t a race I usually get involved in and this year again I will be staying clear.

Thursday sees my personal favourite race take centre stage in the form of the Ascot Gold Cup. Last year I tipped up the winner Trip to Paris at a nice 12-1 and this year I will be hoping for a similar story. The market is currently headed by Order of St George who is currently as short as 5-4, trained by Aiden O’Brien in Ireland this horse has does little wrong and looks to be still improving. Keeping on the Irish theme the next two horses in the market areBondi Beach and the Melbourne Cup runner up Max Dynamite. Bondi Beach needs to prove he stays for which I’m not convinced while Max Dynamite needs to strip fitter for his reappearance run when beaten by Pallasator. Outsiders to keep an eye on are the likes of Curbyourenthusiasm who shapes as if this further step up in trip will suit and Burmese who had to make the running last time out and was not seen to best effect.

Friday is Commonwealth Cup day and has a stellar line up of entries. Leading the market is the impressive Haydock winner and Karl Burke trainedQuiet Reflection. Connections are quite bullish about this horses chances and that to me is always a good sign. American Raider Acapulco also has an entry here and the trainer is considering running him in both entered races. If he does his price would shorten substantially, getting on the price available early may be the best idea. Others to note are Log Out Island who made all in the Carnarvon Stakes, although such a tactic may not work up the Ascot straight. Buratino is a big price and has good course form; the recent rain however is a worry. A horse at larger odds I fancy is La Rioja who wasn’t seen to best effect when in behind Quiet Reflection at Haydock. She struggled for room and never looked at ease on the track; she is a big filly and will come on for the run. Ascot will suit better, as will the recent rain.

Saturday was a special day for me last year. I tipped up the winner of the Wokingham – Interception at a massive 22-1 and this year I will be hoping for similar stories in all of the major big field handicaps. The big race on the final day of the Royal Ascot festival comes in the form of the Diamond Jubilee Stakes. The race was won last year by Undrafted who is back again for more, while the market speaks in favour of Charlie Hills’s Magical Memory who has done little wrong this year. The Tin Man is also strongly fancied after winning over 6f’s at Windsor for Fanshawe, while Strath Burnruns today and I predict Hills will expect him to win if he is to run in this event. Limato catches my eye and although he has an entry in the Queen Anne, I do feel 6f’s up the long straight at Ascot will suit much better.

We have just scratched the service here of what will be an immense, sometimes tense but mostly exciting week of top quality racing.

My record at Ascot speaks for itself with many notable winners and I couldn’t be going into it in better form. In the last month alone we have had Duke of Firenze 14-1, Saigon City 40-1, Barsanti 5-2, Mehmas 4-1, Belardo 8-1, Turbine 10-1, Albahar 16-1, Profitable 10-1, Nam Hai 4-1, Pike Corner Cross 12-1, Blaine 16-1, Confessional 5-1, Classic Seniority 16-1, Woody Bay 20-1 and Lexi’s Hero 9-2 – ALL WINNERS.

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Royal Ascot specials are now live on get yours and don’t miss out on what will be a huge week.


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