All of Lewis Jones’ tips placed on Thursday which took him slightly into profit for the week, will he land one on the bookmakers’ chin on Friday?
Although Stradivarius made it look easy on Thursday, the ground on the round course at Royal Ascot is likely to make the Hardwicke Stakes (3.00) a race where only stayers need apply. With that in mind, it wouldn’t be a big surprise to see HAMISH (8/1 with Sky Bet) finish ahead of those like Elarqam and Anthony Van Dijk, who might be a tad overrated for a race of this nature.
Hamish progressed through the handicap ranks last season, winning connections over £140,000 for two wins at York that read well from a form perspective. His momentum was slightly dented by Trueshan in a fiddly small field race on his final start but there wasn’t much between them that day and I’m happy to forgive him for that defeat. Jockey James Doyle rides the round course better than anyone – he’s had two winners and three placed finishes in his seven rides so far this week.
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Art Power has to be a candidate for the most bonkers price of the entire week in the Palace Of Holyroodhouse Handicap (1.15) – and not in a good way. He’s set to go off around 2/1 for a competitive three-year-old five-furlong sprint involving improving horses. Yes, Tim Easterby might think he’s a superstar but we haven’t seen it on the track yet. Granted, he was an impressive winner of a novice under a penalty but his main market rival flopped that day and the runner-up has since only scraped home in a below-par maiden. This is a horse where it’s simply great to be a bookmaker. Take him on.
I’m going to back MIGHTY SPIRIT (16/1 with Sky Bet – paying six places) in the hope that a big field and an end-to-end gallop will be right up her street. She wasn’t easy to win with last season, only breaking her maiden tag at the ninth time of asking but she’d been running in some hot races. The pick of her performances came over course and distance when drawn on the wrong side in a deep renewal of the Queen Mary only finding Liberty Beach, who has gone onto be a superstar, too good on her side. The Richard Fahey runner returns off a mark of 90 for her first run in a handicap and is of interest.
Speaking of the Queen Mary, I’m happy to see the runner-up from that day KIMARI (6/1 with Sky Bet – paying five places) given her chance to race at three and I like her chances in the Commonwealth Cup (3.35). Favourite Pierre Lapin is making the market for those with an each-way tendency and Kimari is equipped to run a huge race for the Wesley Ward team. Unlike most her stablemates, she has showed her ability to mature with racing and won impressively from the back at Oaklawn in April. With Frankie Dettori booked she can play a big part in the finish.
Born With Pride has been all the rage in the Queens Vase (4.10) but it would be remiss of me not back BERKSHIRE ROCCO (9/2 with Sky Bet) considering the amount of faith I have in English King’s Derby chances. The selection ran a game race behind the impressive winner at Lingfield, sustaining a strong gallop all the way to the line despite being outclassed by what looks a top-class animal. The time of the race backed up the visuals and usually those beaten in a good Derby trial have a fine record when switching to this distance in this race. Both recent winners, Dashing Willoughby and Kew Gardens, undertook the same path of Berkshire Rocco.
Source : Sky Sports