ONLY seven runners line up for the Prince of Wales’s Stakes, the feature on the second day of the Royal Meeting, but amongst them is the world’s joint top-rated horse SO YOU THINK.
The five-year-old son of High Chaparral was snapped up by Coolmore last season after a glittering career in Australia that saw him win five Group One races and finish a gallant third in the Melbourne Cup. He has won both of his two starts for his new stable by a staggering 10 and 4 ½ lengths and I’d rather be a backer than a layer at around 1.5 on Betdaq.
As for the opposition, the chief danger looks sure to be the French-trained Planteur who has also won both his starts this campaign. He was impressive in the Prix Ganay last time and looked to have a lot of work to do that day before eventually reeling in Sarafina late on. If there are any chinks in the favourite’s armour, he will certainly pick up the pieces.
The French have an excellent chance of landing the Jersey Stakes (2.30pm) with Havane Smoker who finished second to Tin Horse in the Poule D’Essai Des Poulaines (French 2000 Guineas). I trust that form more than Oracle’s third place finish in the Irish equivalent although the biggest danger to both looks to be William Haggas’s FURY.
Our selection won both of his starts as a two-year-old over this trip and has shaped like a mile might stretch his stamina in both starts this season. He was by no means disgraced when fifth in the 2000 Guineas and was mugged late on at Sandown last time. He is held in high regard by his trainer and as long as the ground doesn’t dry out too much, looks the one to be on.
Seta and Sajjhaa are battling it out for favouritism in the Windsor Forest Stakes (3.05pm), but there are grounds to look past both fillies. Firstly, Seta has yet to prove herself in Group company and has disappointed on both occasions she has been campaigned at this level. Sajjhaa looks more solid and ran really respectably behind Midday at York. She’ll appreciate the drop back to a mile, but may well find one too good again.
That one may well be the David Simcock-trained I’m A Dreamer who looks to have improved dramatically between three and four on the evidence of her win at Newmarket last time. She waltzed away with the Dahlia Stakes that day and the runner-up ran well at Warwick on Monday night behind Timepiece. She can be backed at 5/1 with Star Sports and that looks a rock solid each-way bet.
FURY Royal Ascot 2.30pm
I’M A DREAMER Royal Ascot 3.05pm
SO YOU THINK Royal Ascot 3.45pm
IN-RUNNING TRADING HINTS
There are definite grounds for believing that So You Think could easily trade bigger than the current 1.5 on offer with Betdaq in-running. Aidan O’Brien’s colt was pushed along before asserting at the Curragh last time and may not travel like a heavy odds-on shot turning in. That said, I still expect him to pick up and win.
Sajjhaa looks sure to be ridden prominently in the Windsor Forest Stakes (3.05pm) and will surely trade shorter than her starting price at the two furlong pole. Even though Frankie Dettori is a master from the front, that should be the time to reach for the lay button as there will be plenty challenging her late on.
Shumoos is certain to be sent off a very warm order in the Queen Mary Stakes (5pm), but there are plenty of other unexposed fillies in the field and I’d be worried about taking too short a price in-running about the favourite if she’s travelling well. She is already very short and she could trade odds-on a long way out. That may well be the time to lay her.
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