Royal Ascot Day 4 sees the fillies in the spotlight as the Group 1 Coronation Stakes is today’s feature race.
The Coronation Stakes at 4.25 promises to be a cracking race. There is a plethora of group winners, raiders from Ireland and France and 2 of the best juvenile fillies from last season making their 3yo debuts. It is very rare that the bookies go 4/1 to the field in a Group 1 containing only 12 horses. However that highlights the competitiveness of this race. This is the race that sees all the Guineas form brought together. We have the runner up from Newmarket and the Curragh – Lightning Thunder, along with the horse backed off the boards in the English version Tapestry, plus French Guineas runners, Lesstalk in Paris and J Wonder. My Titania was expected to be the leading 3yo filly this season but she hasn’t made it to the racecourse until today. There are numerous other horses that add a bit of spice to this race and this should be a cracker.
As for betting opportunities today well I’m quite prepared to exercise a bit of patience and wait until the 5.35 the Buckingham Palace Handicap run over the straight 7f.
Some interesting trends are beginning to emerge for this race.1) Micheal Stoute has had 3 runners who all started at the head of the betting and all of whom finished outside the top ten. And today he has the favourite again – excellent. 2) Horses drawn in the middle section perform poorly in this race. 3) Any horse who has back form at Ascot tends to out run their price and go close.
So with these facts in mind, I am going to take a shot at 3 horses at decent prices to hit the target.
Pastoral Player has been locking horns with top notch horses for the past 3 seasons since he ran 3rd in an above average Wokingham here behind Group 1 winner Deacon Blue. The following year he went off at only 20/1 to take on the great Black Caviar and reached a handicap high mark of 112. His form has been patchy since but he is now down to a mark of 99, which is the lowest for 3 years and just slightly higher than when he destroyed a big field on Good to Firm ground at Newmarket in May 2011. With conditions ideal and H. Turner booked a big run is expected.
Bronze Angel has a similar profile to Pastoral in as much as a good handicap win sent his handicap mark rocketing and he has been taking on better quality horses for 2 seasons. I remember watching this horse finish strongly here in the Britannia in 2012 and noting him as a horse to follow. The next time he ran, he won the Cambridgeshire at Newmarket off a mark of 95, the same mark he is due to run off here. The worry with him is the trip of 7f as he has looked better over 1m and 9f but the price is too tempting to leave him out.
Tamayuz Star takes a little bit more explaining as he is the complete outsider of the field. But 3 things help me to choose him. He has decent course form, 10th in the Group 3 Jersey last season plus a 7th in a hot handicap in October. He has a good draw (32). Plus the final piece is he is trained by G. Margarson who always likes to line up a good team for these races – he has 3 in this. I think this one is overpriced.
Royal Ascot Day 4 Friday 20th June
5.35 Pastoral Player @ 16/1 with bet365.
5.35 Bronze Angel @ 18/1 with bet365.
5.35 Tamayuz Star @ 66/1 with bet365.