It is Coronation Stakes Day at Royal Ascot and we have the analysis and selections for every race, plus all the other British and Irish meetings taking place on Friday, June 17, 2016.
Each day Bet4Causes will provide you with a preview of the day’s racing, offering what the experts feel will be the value bets of the day.
ROYAL ASCOT – DAY FOUR
2.30 Albany Stakes (Fillies’ Group 3) 6f
FORECAST: Cuff (9/4), Create A Dream (4/1), Kilmah (13/2), Romantic View (8/1), Queen Kindly (10/1), Brave Anna (11/1), Grizzel (14/1), Bletchley (16/1), Oh Grace (20/1), Cheval Blanche (25/1), Dainty Dandy (25/1), High On Love (25/1), Sea Of Snow (25/1), Spin Doctor (25/1), Perfect Madge (50/1), Melesina (100/1)
ANALYSIS: This race was first run in 2002 as The Henry Carnarvon Stakes, honouring The Queen’s late racing manager, and proved so successful that it was promoted to Group 3 status in 2005. Restricted to two-year-old fillies, the six-furlong event provides one of the first opportunities of the season for promising types to prove their ability and advertise their 1,000 Guineas credentials.
The Hannon yard has saddled the winner three times in the last 11 years, including last season’s heroine Luminate, who went on to win a Group 2 at Newmarket before finishing second to Lumiere in the Group 1 Cheveley Park Stakes last autumn.
They rely upon Grizzel, who does not yet look up to her class, despite winning both her starts by narrow margins over 5f at Sandown and Beverley. She is bred to get further and her victory at Beverley came on ground that was quicker than ideal, so she can be marked up accordingly.
CUFF is one of the more experienced of the 16-strong line-up, having had three previous starts and winning her last two. Progeny of Galileo do not usually have the pace to mix it with 5f specialists, but this daughter of the top-class sire appears to have speed to burn. Having been initially very green on her debut, she has improved markedly and took a 6f good-ground Listed race at Naas last time by three lengths, and sets a very high standard. Stablemate Brave Anna should get further than this trip on the evidence of her recent Curragh win over 6f on testing ground.
Create A Dream represents American trainer Wesley Ward and this daughter of Oasis Dream looked very useful when making a winning debut over 5f on good to soft ground here in April, making all with a bit to spare and beating a few previous winners. The ground may be a factor, particularly over this extra distance, although she looked as though she would come on a bundle for the run.
Given his propensity for success with juveniles, Mark Johnston has surprisingly yet to train an Albany winner, but Kilmah has a fair chance of putting that right if she replicates the form of her impressive two-length debut win over a couple of experienced fillies, one of which has subsequently scored. She is a powerful type by Aussie sprinter Sepoy and despite showing plenty of pace, there is a stamina influence on her dam’s side of her pedigree.
Queen Kindly, a five-length quick-ground Catterick winner, is the first filly by Frankel to make the racecourse and is also the first foal of the Princess Margaret, Lowther and Diadem Stakes winner Lady Of The Desert. She did not beat much on her debut but could not have been more impressive over the minimum trip. Her potential is massive.
Romantic View appreciated the step up to 6f when scoring at Goodwood on her second start, having been a fine second over an inadequate 5f at Ascot in a race that has worked out quite well. On a line through runner-up Pepita, William Buick’s mount still has a bit to find with the selection.
3.05 King Edward VII Stakes (Group 2) 1m4f
FORECAST: Beacon Rock (3/1), Carntop (4/1), Choreographer (6/1), Humphrey Bogart (7/1), Lustrous Light (7/1), Housesofparliament (8/1), Muntahaa (10/1), Linguistic (12/1), Across The Stars (14/1)
HISTORY: Formerly known, and still colloquially referred to, as The Ascot Derby, this race was inaugurated in 1834 and regularly featured horses of both sexes that had competed in the middle-distance Classics.
First run as The King Edward VII Stakes in 1926 and now restricted to three-year-old colts and geldings only, it still attracts horses that have competed in the Derby.
ANALYSIS: This race used to be a boon for favourite backers but while only one winner has returned a double-figure Starting Price in the last 19 renewals, only two market leaders have obliged in the last 11 years.
John Gosden and Sir Michael Stoute have each won this three times in the last 14 years and both hold a strong hand again.
Gosden has a two-pronged assault on the £122,210 first prize with Muntahaa and Linguistic. The former was not seen on a racecourse until April and has progressed with each of his three runs, latterly landing a 1m4 maiden on the all-weather at Kempton two weeks ago. He made most of the running and while Paul Hanagan rode him out to give him much-needed experience, he was never challenged to win by six lengths. He should progress but this is a big step up in class.
Linguistic, who will be equipped with first-time blinkers, won his Newmarket maiden on good to soft ground on his seasonal bow in April before running a fine second to Viren’s Army in the Dee Stakes at Chester. Back at HQ and having a third run in five weeks, he was beaten at odds-on by Steel Of Madrid. He may have been a little jaded and that run is best forgiven.
Stoute saddles Across The Stars, who was previously third in the (admittedly weak) Lingfield Derby Trial before looking out of his depth when tenth in the Epsom Derby, beaten 19 lengths by Harzand. Had he handled the decent to Tattenham Corner better, he may well have been closer, as he stayed on in the closing stages.
Humphrey Bogart won the Lingfield Derby Trial and was supplemented for Epsom, where he finished a fine fifth. He lacked the class of a couple of rivals there, but handles easy ground, so may have a shout in what looks a very open race.
Carntop was second at Lingfield, being beaten half a length on his seasonal debut against race-fit rivals. Ralph Beckett’s charge is entitled to come on significantly for the run and he looks a nice long-term prospect.
CHOREOGRAPHER and Beacon Rock are the two to concentrate upon. The former has had just two runs, landing a Windsor maiden before finishing nine lengths behind Wings Of Desire in the Dante at York, having been blocked on at least two occasions. He would have finished a lot closer but for the traffic problems and despite his inexperience, Roger Varian’s runner gets the vote.
Beacon Rock, trained by Aidan O’Brien, landed the Group 3 Gallinule Stakes at the Curragh, making all and staying on strongly last time. He has obvious claims if handling this step up in trip. There is no reason to think he won’t.
3.40 Commonwealth Cup (Group 1) 6f
FORECAST: Quiet Reflection (15/8), Donjuan Triumphant (5/1), Log Out Island (6/1), Washington Dc (8/1), La Rioja (10/1), Buratino (12/1), Cheikeljack (12/1), Illuminate (14/1), Kachy (16/1), Dream Dubai (20/1), Money Maker (33/1), Waterloo Bridge (33/1)
HISTORY: The inaugural running of the Commonwealth Cup in 2015 marked the first Group 1 sprint contest in Europe confined to three-year-olds.
It was also the first new race in the 44-year history of the European Pattern to go straight in with Group 1 status, rather than with a probationary period at a lower level. Muhaarar, an Oasis Dream colt owned by Hamdan Al Maktoum, trained by Charlie Hills and ridden by Dane O’Neill, was a most impressive winner, coming home three and three-quarter lengths clear of Limato, with Anthem Alexander third.
The stunning victory was no fluke as Muhaarar remained unbeaten for the rest of the year in three more Group 1 sprints, the Darley July Cup, the Larc Prix Maurice De Gheest and the QIPCO British Champions Sprint Stakes, becoming European Champion Sprinter.
ANALYSIS: This year’s renewal does not match last year’s, where all 18 runners had already secured Black Type and 13 of them were either Group or Listed winners.
The soft ground means there is no Acapulco and no Air Force Blue, so QUIET REFLECTION, winner of the Sandy Lane Stakes at Haydock last time, heads the remaining 12 entries.
Karl Burke’s three-year-old has won five of her six career starts but has been made favourite just once, when scoring in the Group 3 Cornwallis at Newmarket over 5f to end her juvenile campaign. She took another Group 3 over 6f at Chantilly on her three-year-old debut (Money Maker well held) before looking as though she had improved again with a three and three-quarter length success at Haydock, with useful sprinters like Donjuan Triumphant (2nd) Gifted Master, Buratino (4th) and La Rioja (5th) behind.
Buratino, who had previously struggled in the 2,000 Guineas, travelled well but looked as though the 6f was a bit too sharp, while Rioja’s stable has not been in prime form recently.
Donjuan Triumphant, whose three wins for Richard Fahey last year included an impressive success in a soft-ground Group 2, was having his first run of the season and was giving the selection 6lb. He is entitled to come on for the run and shoulders just 3lb more this time, so it would be no surprise to see him get closer on a surface he should relish.
Log Out Island, a runaway Listed winner at Newbury last month, was highly tried last season. He won last season’s Two-Year-Old Trophy at Redcar, having previously finished behind just behind Wednesday’s Jersey winner Ribchester in the Mill Reef. Richard Hannon’s Dark Angel colt cannot be dismissed lightly and rates as each-way value.
Aidan O’Brien saddles Washington Dc, who was runner-up to stablemate Air Force Blue in the Group 1 Phoenix Stakes at the Curragh last season but was given an overly-confident ride by Ryan Moore at Naas in a Group 3 last time, failing to catch Only Mine when much the best horse in the race. Stop us if you have heard that one before.
4.20 Coronation Stakes (Fillies’ Group 1) 1m
FORECAST: Jet Setting (2/1), Nathra (11/2), Qemah (6/1), Nemoralia (7/1), Alice Springs (10/1), Fireglow (14/1), Now Or Never (14/1), Tanaza (14/1), Marenko (16/1), Ashadihan (20/1), Besharah (20/1), Promising Run (25/1), Czabo (33/1)
HISTORY: First run in 1840, the Coronation Stakes, the highlight of the Friday of Royal Ascot, was founded to commemorate the crowning of Queen Victoria in 1838. The mile event for three-year-olds became the fillies’ equivalent of the St James’s Palace Stakes and established itself as a natural progression for fillies who had run creditably in the 1,000 Guineas at Newmarket earlier in the season.
Last season, this was won by French filly Ervedya who got the better of subsequent Breeders’ Cup Turf heroine Found by a neck. The Jean-Claude Rouget-trained filly defeated the colts in the Group One Prix Du Moulin in September.
ANALYSIS: Eight market leaders have prevailed in the last 16 years in a race where shocks are rare. The biggest-priced winner in that span was the John Gosden-trained 12/1 shot Fallen For You in 2012.
Aidan O’Brien has won this race twice, the last time with Lillie Langtry six years ago, and with 1,000 Guineas runner-up Ballydoyle failing to line up, he relies upon Alice Springs, who was third in that Classic, beaten four lengths by Minding. Attempting the English-French double within the space of two weeks was beyond her and she ran flat when seventh in the Poule D’Essai Des Pouliches last time. She is better than that and could bounce back.
She has a bit to find with Jet Setting, who beat her into third when landing the 1,000 Guineas Trial at Leoparstown in April. Adrian Keatly’s filly then reversed her Newmarket form with Minding (distant eighth), when lowering the colours of the subsequent Oaks scorer in the Irish 1,000 Guineas (Tanaza a well-beaten seventh).
NATHRA, winner of the Nell Gwyn on her seasonal bow, was a fine fifth in the first fillies’ Classic and then was beaten a length by La Cressonniere in the French 1,000, which represents the strongest form on offer. She has gone close in three Group 1s (also runner-up to Minding in the Fillies’ Mile at Newmarket last season) and John Gosden’s daughter of Iffraaj has shown she handles easy ground. So consistent, she deserves a top-level success and may get it here.
In contrast, Nemoralia lines up in spite of the soft ground. Third in the Breeders’ Cup Juvenile Fillies’ Turf in October, she showed her wellbeing with a scorching six-length win in a Listed fillies’ mile on quick ground at York last month. If the ground dries sufficiently, Jeremy Noseda’s representative could be a major threat.
Last year’s winning stable is represented by Qemah, who was sent off favourite for the French 1,000 Guineas following her win in the Group 3 Prix de la Grotte, but found the ground a little too lively at Deauville, finishing a head behind Nathra. She will find conditions much more to her liking and looks overpriced at present – an each-way bet to nothing, perhaps?
Last year’s Princess Margaret and Lowther winner Besharah can also be considered, as William Haggas’s filly was just a head behind Qemah at Chantilly. However, her trainer feels she is better at 7f than at this mile trip.
5.00 Duke Of Edinburgh Stakes (Handicap) 1m4f
FORECAST: Elite Army (6/1), Kings Fete (8/1), Cymro (10/1), Ajman Bridge (12/1), Fabricate (12/1), Ivan Grozny (12/1), Kinema (12/1), First Sitting (14/1), Hamelin (14/1), Rare Rhythm (14/1), Windshear (14/1), Dawn Missile (16/1), John Reel (16/1), Missed Call (16/1), Felix Mendelssohn (20/1), Notarised (20/1), Quarterback (20/1), Top Tug (20/1), A Soldier’s Life (25/1), Blue Surf (25/1), Faithful Creek (25/1), Majeed (25/1)
HISTORY: Originally The Bessborough Stakes, it was named after the fifth Earl of Bessborough, who was Master of the Buckhounds between 1848 and 1866. The race was renamed The Duke Of Edinburgh Stakes in 1999. First run in 1914 as a five-furlong event for two-year-olds, it has now evolved into a middle distance handicap for three-year-olds and upward.
ANALYSIS: Sir Michael Stoute has a fine record in this, with no less than six winners in the last 18 years, the last of those coming two years ago when Arab Spring scored in the hands of Ryan Moore.
Three of the last four runnings have been won by the favourite, which is rare as just one market leader had prevailed in the previous 21 years prior to 2012.
Stoute relies on Kings Fete who had been off the track since well beaten by Kingston Hill in the 2014 St Leger before turning up at Goodwood last month, only to finish a tame fifth to Decorated Knight. It was not a bad performance given his lay-off and he should come on a ton for the run. Yet he may still be a little ring-rusty.
On the same day at Newmarket, John Reel won a decent handicap off a mark of 98 and is up 3lb today. David Evans’s seven-year-old had the Roger Varian-trained Ajman Bridge (making his seasonal debut, 5th) and Felix Mendelssohn (7th) in behind.
The former, a close second in this race last year off a 4lb lower mark, is expected to play a major role again and reverse that form. Quarterback won the Listed Scandic Norsk Derby at Ovrevoll in Norway last August, but has a bit to find on his seventh to Sheikhzayedroad in the Group 3 Nad Al Sheba Trophy at Meydan (1m6f) in March and bottom-weight Dawn Missile is a more interesting outsider.
He has not run since October and was a big, gangly three-year-old, but showed he was well ahead of the handicapper when scoring over this trip at Haydock in August. William Haggas’s runner is worth keeping an eye on whatever happens here.
Godolphin are triple-handed, with Rare Rhythm, who is having only the fifth run of his career and his first since scoring by four lengths over this trip at Newmarket in September, A Soldier’s Life, who should relish the ground but who is likewise having his first run for 278 days, and Elite Army.
The latter shoulders top weight, having defeated Gold Cup-bound Scotland by a head on is seasonal bow in a Listed race here last month, where Missed Call (previously a runner-up in the Cumberland Lodge) was over three-lengths back in third. Elite Army had been off the track for over a year and had been gelded. He failed to settle, did not have much room and still managed to win, so looks a worthy market leader.
However, Cymro and FIRST SITTING will doubtless see support. The former, trained by Tom Dascombe, has won four of his last eight races and has been steadily progressing. He will relish the ease underfoot, although the stable has not been firing in the winners lately.
The latter-named, trained by Chris Wall, shoulders a 4lb penalty for blitzing a small field at Windsor 11 days ago and he is open to improvement at this trip.
Fabricate, owned by HM The Queen, is a son of Makfi out of an Oaks runner-up in Flight Of Fancy, so gets this trip rather well. He won two of four for Michael Bell last year, was gelded over the winter and joined Chris Wall before finishing a fine second to Sir Chauvelin at Hamilton last month. He looked better the further he went and will be staying on at the death. The four-year-old holds each-way claims.
5.35 Queen’s Vase (Listed) 2m
FORECAST: Ebediyin (4/1), Ormito (5/1), Landofhopeandglory (8/1), Cole Porter (12/1), Daphne (12/1), Gunnery (12/1), Opposition (12/1), Soldier In Action (12/1), Goldmember (14/1), Harbour Law (14/1), Sword Fighter (14/1), Twilight Payment (14/1), Girling (16/1), The Tartan Spartan (20/1), Beaverbrook (25/1), Birthplace (25/1), Magnum (25/1), Saga Sprint (50/1), King Julien (100/1)
HISTORY: Named to honour Queen Victoria and first run in 1838, this race became The King’s Vase in 1903 and reverted to its original name of The Queen’s Vase on the succession of Queen Elizabeth II. Run over two miles, this Group Three contest provides a thorough test of stamina for three-year-olds and winners of this race often go on to compete in The Gold Cup in future years.
It has been a good race for punters, with six of the last eight favourites obliging and the last 13 winners coming from one of the first four in the market.
In the last 18 years, it has been farmed by Aidan O’Brien (four wins), Mark Johnston (seven wins), Sir Michael Stoute (four wins) and Saeed bin Suroor (two wins). Only Henry Cecil broke their stranglehold in in 1999.
ANALYSIS: Mark Johnson has two in the race and both are outsiders.
Beaverbrook shoulders top weight but has posted one win in 13 career starts, that coming over a year ago at Chester. His fifth to Hawkbill at Newmarket over 1m2f reads well, though and he is open to improvement on soft ground. This extra six furlongs is an unknown, as he had never raced beyond 10f.
Soldier In Action has finished last in his last two races but they were over 10.5f and he appreciated the step up to 12.5f at Chester in May, just getting collared late on by Red Verdon. There may be more to come over this trip.
Aidan O’Brien, who won this last year with Aloft, saddles a trio, headed by Landofhopeandglory, who was fourth in the Lingfield Derby Trial over 11.5f and then three-and-a-half lengths behind Beacon Rock in a 1m2f Group 3 at the Curragh. He may lack a little resolution if that run is to be believed. Cole Porter made all to win at Leopardstown over 1m4f and did it in good style, suggesting there is more to come, and he cannot be ruled out.
O’Brien’s other runner, Sword Fighter, made most of the running in a tactical affair at Naas over 1m4f, but was beaten two-and-a-half-lengths by EBEDIYIN, who was conceding 8lb but who travelled very smoothly. They meet on level terms this time. The selection may need to be played late, so you take a chance that Dermot Weld’s runner will get a clear passage.
Ormito, rated 100 after finishing a length third to Algometer in the four-runner Listed Cocked Hat at Goodwood, was perhaps flattered by the muddling pace, but if replicating his Chester Vase third over this longer trip, Andrew Balding’s runner could be in the mix.
Gunnery is also of interest. Peter Chapple-Hyam’s representative has only had four starts and, having been nosed out of a decent 12.5f handicap at Chester after making up late ground, he should be suited by this more galloping track.
Harbour Law, winner of his last two, including a useful handicap at Sandown, and Goldmember, who scored over 12f at Thirsk, are others to consider in an awkward finale.
LUCKY 15 SELECTIONS
CUFF (Royal Ascot 2.30)
EBEDIYIN (Royal Ascot 5.35)
ISTANBUL BEY (Redcar 2.20)
WAFI STAR (Goodwood 6.10)
REDCAR: 1.50 Springforth, 2.20 Istanbul Bey, 2.55 Mowhoob, 3.30 Energia Flavio, 4.05 Dune Dancer, 4.45 Lawyer, 5.20 Rustique, 5.55 Compton River
MARKET RASEN: 1.40 Milrow, 2.10 Patronne, 2.45 Down Time, 3.20 Party Rock, 3.55 Indian Stream, 4.35 For ‘n’ Against, 5.10 Mr Monochrome
NEWMARKET: 5.50 He’s My Boy, 6.20 Baydar, 6.55 Thaaqib, 7.30 Blackout, 8.00 Namhroodah, 8.35 Plenary, 9.05 Justice Lady
GOODWOOD: 6.10 Wafi Star, 6.45 Capolavoro, 7.15 Entrench, 7.50 Monotype, 8.25 Lovely Memory, 8.55 Shahaama
AYR: 6.30 Hussar Ballad, 7.05 Jaameh, 7.40 Classic Seniority, 8.10 Odeon, 8.45 Intisaab, 9.15 Innocent Touch
DOWN ROYAL: 5.45 Listen Dear, 6.15 Tajseer, 6.50 Clarcam, 7.20 Garri Rua, 7.55 Beau Et Sublime, 8.30 Shanahan’s Turn, 9.00 Qery
LIMERICK: 5.30 Mo Henry, 6.05 Ishebayorgrey, 6.35 Sweetasever, 7.10 Intense Stylist, 7.45 Remarkable Lady, 8.10 Artiste Celebre, 8.50 Micras
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