THE Group One King’s Stand Stakes (3.40pm) is always hotly-contested and today features 19 speedballs that are sure to be wound up and ready to go.
Sole Power has been a wonderful servant for Eddie Lynam and the Power family. He has won the last two editions of this race and bids to make history this afternoon by becoming the first horse to win it three times.
The evergreen eight-year-old was superb in the Al Quoz Sprint at Meydan and can be forgiven his latest outing over six furlongs at the Curragh.
He will surely go very close again, but I’m not prepared to back him at just 7/2 with Betway.
The one who interests me most is the Durham-based MECCA’S ANGEL who can record her eighth career victory.
The eye-catching grey remained unbeaten last season and then made an electric reappearance when posting a track record in Group Three company at Longchamp last month.
Although she’s yet to go hoof-to-hoof with those at the highest level, I’ve been very impressed with her. She should be supported at 7/1 with Unibet.
Despite showing most promise on softer ground, she had no trouble handling Longchamp’s quicker conditions last time. With plenty of watering having taken place at Ascot, conditions should be fine for her here too.
Muthmir is another who was successful over the English Channel last time out and he looks a live threat.
Having picked up a couple of valuable handicaps, the son of Invincible Spirit looks to be improving all the time for his in-form trainer William Haggas. However, he is also quite short, at 11/2 with Paddy Power.
The Australian-trained Shamal Wind is interesting with Ryan Moore in the saddle, but she has already come up short at the highest level back home. I’m happy to ignore her at 7/1 as a result.
There are plenty of outsiders with a squeak in this, none more so than Jack Dexter who has been in fine form this campaign and was unlucky at Haydock last time out.
A field of just six lines-up for the St James’s Palace Stakes (4.20pm) and it’s probably sensible not to have a financial interest in the Group One contest over a mile.
English and Irish 2,000 Guineas winner Gleneagles will be a tough nut to crack, but I’m not prepared to take 8/13 as he faces a pretty smart colt in French 2000 Guineas winner Make Believe.
Sir Michael Stoute also saddles the unbeaten Consort, who could be a potential superstar, so just sit back and watch the race without getting involved.
MECCA’S ANGEL e/w 3.40pm Ascot