Friday, 21 June 2013

Who Will Be The Coronation Queen?

Day 4 sees this year’s leading three-year-old fillies take centre stage in the mile Group 1 Coronation Cup.

Sky Lantern, winner of the 1,000 Guineas, and Just The Judge, winner of the Irish 1,000 Guineas, are the clear picks on form, but neither have been done any favours by the draw.

Many judges are preferring to go with Big Break, who ran on well to finish fourth in the Irish Classic on her first run of the year after herself having a poor draw, while French-based pundits have always thought Siyenca would be their best chance of success this week – and she has a good stalls position in four. She had disastrous run in the Poule d’Essai des Pouliches, and is considered to be a far better filly than that performance showed.

The Irish-trained filly Viztoria is also one to put into the mix as a rapidly improving filly, but Sky Lantern has shown exemplary form so far this year and if Richard Hughes can find some cover, get her settled, her turn of foot in the last furlong should prove decisive.

Sandiva can make it three out of three in the Albany
The juvenile fillies start the day off in the Group 3 Albany Stakes, run over 6f.
Richard Fahey’s filly Sandiva has done nothing wrong so far, winning two out of two, the second being a Listed race at Naas in May, which she won without having to be fully extended.  She is a half-sister to Wentworth, fourth in the mile Britannia Handicap yesterday, and should have both the speed and stamina for this.

Leading challengers include Joyeuse, Wonderfully and Wedding Ring.

Go into Battle in the King Edward
The Group 2 King Edward VII (3.05) over 1m4f is the race for the leading middle-distance three-year-old colts who either did not make it to the Derby or who were not quite good enough on race day.

Battle Of Marengo is one from the latter group, though he still finished a creditable fourth at Epsom. He is easily ahead of this field on official ratings, and as long as the Derby effort has not taken too much out of him, he should show his rivals clean pair of heels here. Contributor could be the one to follow him home.

Get Fatt in the Wolferton
There has been early morning money for Fattsota in the 1m2f Wolferton Handicap (4.25), who was a dual winner over course and distance last year.  He was sent on his holidays over the winter to Dubai where he ran twice, finishing second once. He was then out of his depth in the 1m4f Group 3 John Porter Stakes, but subsequently ran well in a handicap at Epsom, despite not handling the track. He looked then as though further should suit and this stiff 1m2f should be ideal.

A Queen’s Vase for Team Cecil?
The Queen’s Vase is being run in memory of Sir Henry Cecil (a race he won eight times) and Lady Cecil will be represented by Disclaimer, who is bidding for a fifth win in succession. Last time out he beat Contributor (runs in the King Edward VII) with some ease, and although he has never run further than 1m3f, his dam won over 1m6f.

Leading Light won a Group 3 last time and although his pedigree does not appeal on the stamina front, he runs in the style of a true stayer.

The market has these two way ahead of the field – most of which look as though they are in this because they have few other options at Royal Ascot – and it will probably prove wise to stick with either or go with both.

Baccarat, Bertiewhittle and Redvers are options in the last
The last on today’s card, the 7f Buckingham Palace Handicap (7f), is another open-looking handicap, with only Enrol (7-1) priced lower than 10-1.

Baccarat won twice over 7f last season and dead-heated over 6f at Ripon in April on his first start in 2013 having not run since June last year. He is clearly a fragile horse to train, and has been raised 10lb for that last success.

Bertiewhittle finished second over course and distance in May in the Victoria Cup behind Excellent Guest, who was ninth in the Royal Hunt Cup earlier this week.  He gets into this on a handy weight and is worth consideration, as does Redvers, fourth in that Victoria Cup and a winner last time on firm ground at Haydock. He is in form and if gets the run of the race – he needs to be held up – is a strong contender.

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