ROYAL ASCOT DAY 3 PREVIEW – ALAN MARRON is on hand to mark your card once again.
2.30 5f Norfolk Stakes (Group 2) (Class 1) (2yo)
SUNDAY SOVEREIGN looks to be one of the standout bets of the week for me.
His form has been very well franked with Arizona, who he beat at The Curragh, coming out and winning the Coventry Stakes on Tuesday.
His win last time out at Tipperary was visually very impressive and it was on soft ground and, with all the rain that Royal Ascot has been getting, the ground is only going to be one way.
This horse has recently been acquired by King Power Racing, but it is nice to see Paddy Twomey keep the horse and Billy Lee keep the ride, rather than their retained jockey Silvestre De Sousa getting on board.
Sunday Sovereign will be very hard to beat and is my nap of day 3 – WE ARE PAYING 1/5 THE ODDS 4 PLACES IN THIS RACE
3.05 1m2f (1m1f212y) Hampton Court Stakes (Group 3) (Class 1) (3yo)
It could be a quick double for the King Power racing team as FOX CHAIRMAN takes his place in this field.
The form of his last run in the Dee Stakes at Chester has been franked by the win of Circus Maximus in the Prince Of Wales’s Stakes on Tuesday.
Fox Chairman got trapped on the inside at Chester and then got switched out off the pace and ran on very strongly to take third close home, but didn’t trouble the front two.
He will enjoy the soft ground and could be good value in this race with normal improvement from Chester – – WE ARE PAYING 1/5 THE ODDS 4 PLACES IN THIS RACE
3.40 1m4f (1m3f211y) Ribblesdale Stakes (Group 2) (Fillies) (Class 1) (3yo)
For those who followed my Epsom previews, you would have seen I was very sweet on the chances of FRANKELLINA in the Oaks. She drops back to 1m 2f here and I think this is a very positive move to say the least.
Her run in the Musidora Stakes at York over the same distance was a very good one considering she was left a good bit behind them at the start of the race. She then ran on strongly up the straight to dead-heat for second.
If you watched the Oaks, she ran on well down the outside but the petrol gauge went to empty in the last two furlongs. The ground will definitely play into her hands at Ascot and she should go very close here.
4.20 2m4f (2m3f210y) Gold Cup (Group 1) (British Champions Series) (Class 1) (4yo+)
Team Coolmore are no strangers to success in this race and they have another decent chance with FLAG OF HONOUR.
His three runs this season, all over 1m2f, have seen him finish second behind Magical. The step up to this extreme trip will surely bring another improvement in form as he showed when fourth to Stradivarius in the Long Distance Cup on Qipco Champions Day over the course.
I honestly believe the price at the minute underestimates his chance should he stay. This horse is a former winner of the Irish St Leger so I have no doubt that the O’Brien team will go into this race with high hopes.
5.00 1m (Str) Britannia Stakes (Heritage Handicap) (Colts & Geldings) (Class 2) (3yo 0-105)
KING ADEMAR is an interesting runner here with cheek-pieces applied for the first time.
If we delve a little deeper into its form, you can see a line of form right back to Magna Grecia. He finished second to King Of Change at Nottingham back in April and King Of Change went on to finish second in the 2000 Guineas behind Magna Grecia.
His handicap mark of 95 looks well within his grasp so you, effectively, have a line of Group form into a handicap.
This horse is drawn 16 which, going on this week, the higher the draw the better.
I can see this horse running a very big race at a double figure price – – WE ARE PAYING 1/5 THE ODDS 6 PLACES IN THIS RACE
5.35 1m4f (1m3f211y) King George V Stakes (Handicap) (Class 2) (3yo 0-105)
Seamie Heffernan is a vital member in the Coolmore cog and could prove his worth here again after his Epsom Derby success.
He gets the leg up on SOUTH PACIFIC, who is a horse who could really thrive on a well-run race. He beat Barbados at Naas back on the 13th of April and that form was nicely franked on Wednesday when Barbados finished second to Dashing Willoughby in the Queens Vase.
South Pacific is a horse who carries his head quite high, but Seamie knows this horse very well and I can see him putting up a decent performance – – WE ARE PAYING 1/5 THE ODDS 5 PLACES IN THIS RACE