Royal Ascot Day 4

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LAXFIELD ROAD was the horse I was initially going to back in The Queen Mary Stakes on Wednesday, however the stable have put her in this. That worked out well for me as I backed Acapulco at 6.00 (5/1). She won by eleven lengths on her only start so far, that was on the fast dirt over 4.5 furlongs at Keeneland. She was a short priced for that race, so the win was expected, however she did it in 52.28 seconds without any fuss.

The step up to six furlongs is a concern, however she is sired by Quality Road who’s a seven to nine furlong sire. She is also related to Hootenanny, who finished second to The Wow Signal over six furlongs on very soft ground last year before going The Breeders’ Cup Juvenile Turf and winning over a eight furlongs.

She will blast off in front and she will be very tough to catch if staying the trip.

Laxfield Road

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Back Laxfield Road at 8.00 – Paddy Power [/symple_box]

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OL’ MAN RIVER has shown no form this season that would make you want to back him in this race, however that’s exactly what I’m going to do. He was very well backed before the 2000 Guineas, suggesting that the stable were expecting a big run. He was eased when his chance had gone in both races this season, but now Aidan O’Brien’s horses are flying after they generally all had a very slow start to the season.

If he can get back to somewhere near his Group Two Beresford stakes win from last season, then he will win this race.

Stravagante was impressive when winning a handicap at Epsom on Derby Day, he’s the correct favourite, however the third home that day finished a long way down the field in the King George V on day four of the royal meeting. That leaves me with a few questions about the strength of the form and the overall potential quality of this horse.

It takes a leap of faith but I’m giving Ol’ Man River one last chance to fulfil the promise he showed last season, he’s beautifully bred and will look a picture in the parade ring.


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Back Ol’ Man River at 5.00 – William Hill[/symple_box]

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This is one of the races of the week, and it’s attracted a fantastic line-up. I spent most of the year thinking that I’d back Limato, but the trainers continual negative comments have put me off backing him. Hootenanny is one of my favourite horse, he won the Windsor Castle last season as well as the Breeders’ Cup Juvenile Turf, however the Ryan Moore effect has now pushed his price down, so I want to oppose him now.

TIGGY WIGGY was beaten by Anthem Alexander in The Queen Mary Stakes last year, but then gained revenge when winning The Cheveley Park Stakes. She started this season campaigned towards the 1000 Guineas, many thought she wouldn’t stay, me included, but she ran a cracker to finish third. The 1000 Guineas looks a strong race this year and her placed finish it that along with her Cheveley Park win give her the leading form claims in my book.

With the way the race is likely to be run Hootenanny could set it up for Tiggy Wiggy, if she can get a good tow into the race from him and use her turn of foot with her new found staying power to overturn him near the line. There are only two Group One winners in the field, one is 4.50 whilst the other is 9.00 and at the prices I think Tiggy Wiggy is the value call.

Tiggy Wiggy

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Back Tiggy Wiggy at 9.00 – Paddy Power[/symple_box]

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ERVEDYA would have been my 1000 Guineas horse, but she wasn’t brought over for it. That leaves the Prix Marcel Boussac as the key form race to look at. Found won that race with Ervedya finishing in second, however that doesn’t tell the full story. Found had the run of the race, whilst Ervedya was drawn out wide which meant that she had to cut across the whole field early on, this caused he to use up energy and not settle, which showed at the end of the race.

Another thing in Ervedya’s favour is that she looks to be an out and out miler, whereas Found looks like she’d appreciate a step up in trip. Ervedya came out and won her group one, French 1000 Guineas, whereas found was beaten in her ‘trial’.

Lucida ended up being the horse I backed in the English 1000 Guineas, when she hit the front I expected her to go on and win the race, it was disappointing that she couldn’t see it out. On a straight line, distance beating, through Irish Rookie Lucida has the beating of Ervedya, but that doen’t take into account the way the race was run. Lucida was all out off a strong pace to try and win the race, whereas Ervedya simply cruised up with no problems off a slower pace. In a race with limited pace it looks a perfect opportunity for Ervedya to show her superior turn of foot.


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Back Ervedya at 5.50 – Paddy Power [/symple_box]

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