Newfangled and Astrology set to brighten up gloomy Ascot

This afternoon’s Coronation Stakes (3.45pm) looks wide open now that Maybe has been pulled out due to a stone bruise, and 11 fillies are set to go to post. They include the winners of both the English and Irish 1000 Guineas, not to mention French raider Bugie D’Amore, and the potentially exciting Cardigan.

However, it is the Mick Channon-trained LAUGH OUT LOUD who makes the most appeal at 5/1 with Coral, even though she was no match for Homecoming Queen at Newmarket. The daughter of Clodovil had Bugie D’Amore four and a quarter lengths behind her when winning the Prix De Sandringham at Chantilly last time and seems to be progressing with every run.

Prior to that, she ran out an impressive winner of a Listed contest at York and has also proved herself effective on this afternoon’s ground. She may have most to fear from her stablemate, Samitar, who sprung a surprise in the Irish 1000 Guineas last time. That form was boosted by runner-up Ishvana’s win in Wednesday’s Jersey Stakes and she could be the one for the forecast.

The opening race on the card this afternoon can go the way of John Gosden and William Buick in the shape of the once-raced NEWFANGLED. The daughter of New Approach couldn’t have been any more impressive on her debut at Newmarket when blitzing a decent looking field on soft ground. The market suggested she may have needed the run that day, as she was sent off a relatively unfancied 10/1, but she comfortably saw off a well-regarded Richard Hannon-trained runner.

She is a really exciting prospect and connections will be disappointed if she doesn’t take this on the way to better things. Her ability to handle the ground is also a huge positive and she looks the bet of the day.

Looking at the rest of the field, I’ve got a sneaky feeling Richard Hannon’s Equitania will run well at a big price and she could be the value for the forecast spot.

Only six runners take on Investec Derby third ASTROLOGY in the King Edward VII Stakes (3.05pm) and Aidan O’Brien’s colt looks hard to oppose in the Group Two contest. He proved rain-softened ground holds no

fears when bolting up at Chester’s May meeting, before running a screamer behind Camelot at Epsom. He’s had nearly three weeks to recover from his exertions and I can

see no reason why Thought Worthy should reverse the placings.

His biggest danger may well be Frankel’s half-brother Noble Mission who bypassed Epsom to come here, but I’m not sure he’s quite good enough.

Elsewhere on the card, I can pass on good words for Perennial in the Queen’s Vase, while both Eton Forever and Primaeval are fancied in the last if the rain stays away. You can follow me live from Ascot on Twitter @BillEsdaile.