The opening day of Royal Ascot 2014 takes place today Tuesday 17th and with a host of Group 1 winners on show, it promises to be a great day.
With Toronado, Sole Power, Shea Shea, Kingman, Night of Thunder and Toormore all on view, there is plenty for enthusiasts to enthuse over!
The St. James Palace Stakes at 4.25 is the best race not only of the day but of the whole meeting, in terms of quality and anticipation. We have Kingman v Night of Thunder (3) with the score standing at 1 all. Who will win today? I really can’t call it. Did Kingman just get done by his jockey’s inexperience at Newmarket or was Night of Thunder an improving opponent? And just to add a bit more spice to this race, there is War Command who stole the show here last year, Toormore who was a top juvenile last season and Outstrip who also won a Group 1 in his juvenile season. Mouthwatering is the only word to describe this race. Just watch and enjoy.
Similarly with the Kings Stand Stakes at 3.45. We have a repeat of last season’s 1-2 with Sole Power and Shea Shea locking horns again. I believe given good or faster ground that Sole Power is just that – the sole power among sprinters. But the ground in recent days has been described as good, good/soft and then back to good which may not be ideal for him. Again though this is not a 2 horse race, with exciting 3 yos Hot Streak and Guerre as well as more experienced campaigners such as Ahtoug, Jack Dexter and Steps lurking in the wings. They will go one hell of a pace in this, so don’t go making a brew or you’ll miss the whole race!
Elsewhere there is the usual plethora of 2yo races which look completely unfathomable and my advice as always is to steer clear of these as unless you have some inside knowledge, as the clues are thin on the ground formwise. I wouldn’t touch these races with the money Qatar gave to Fifa!
Added to this is the Ascot Stakes at 5.oo, a race over 2 miles that sees jumpers testing themselves against flat horses. Again this race has a great look to it and should be a really enjoyable spectacle.
I suggest keeping bets to a minimum today. The temptation is always to jump in head first on the first day, and there is no doubt that the quality on show does make it tempting, but I’m a believer in finding value for my money when betting so i’ll advice only 2 small ew bets today.
If you are betting, bear in mind that bet365 are offering Best Prices on all races at Royal Ascot and also they have their Channel 4 4/1+ price promise, wherein if you back a winner at 4/1+ on Channel 4, you get a free bet to the same stake on the next Channel 4 race.
Royal Ascot 2014 – Tuesday 17th
3.45 – Steps (ew) at 12/1 – with bet365.
5.00 – Domination (ew) at 12/1 – with bet365.