King George VI and Queen Elizabeth I I Stakes Betting Tips 1m4f Ascot Saturday

Snow Sky

Michael Stoute’s Snow Sky ran a fine race in the Yorkshire Cup (Gp2 1m6f) beating the tenacious Brown Panther by 1/2L, but then eclipsed that performance when returned to a more suitable trip in the Hardwicke Stakes over 1m4f at Royal Ascot.

If reproducing his impressive performances in the Derby and Eclipse Stakes, Golden Horn now rated 130, would look a good thing for Saturday’s contest, but as ever in life there are certain caveats. Firstly, only two three year olds have collected in the last decade, but they were both in the hugely talented hands of Golden Horn’s trainer John Gosden, the filly Taghrooda last year, and Nathaniel in 2010. Secondly, four of the last five Derby winners who contested the Ascot race have been beaten, and none since Galileo in 2001 has been successful. However it hasn’t been a race targeted by Derby winners in recent years, with Sir Michael Stoute’s Kris Kin in 2003 the last to try, (he finished 3rd to another 3yo, Alamshar).

Recent statistics certainly give plenty of encouragement to the older generations, and the one with the best C.V. For the task would seem to be the Andre Fabre trained 5yo horse, Flintshire. He ran a great race in last years “Arc” when second to the superb mare Treve, and again ran well when finishing 1 1/4L behind her at Saint-Cloud four weeks ago. Flintshire has won twice at the top level, both times over 1m4f, and his excellent trainer has won the race before (Hurricane Run 2006), so if the favourite doesn’t bring his A game on Saturday the trophy could be going across the channel.

The Italian trained Dylan Mouth also boasts winning form at the top level, having won two Group ones, both at 1m4f, at St Siro. It is tempting to dismiss Italian form as not being up to the standard of British, Irish, French, and more recently German. However this 4yo Dylan Thomas colt was most impressive in a group one last time, winning by 5L, so it is not impossible that he might emulate his sire who won this great race eight years ago. Definitely worthy of his place in Saturday’s line up.

Sir Michael Stoute has trained five previous winners, most recently with Harbinger in 2010, and a success at the weekend would give him the all time record, so his two runners deserve the utmost respect. While it is dangerous to totally dismiss the 5yo Telescope, whose form this year has been disappointing, his best chance seems to lie with the progressive looking 4yo Snow Sky.

He ran a fine race in the Yorkshire Cup (Gp2 1m6f) beating the tenacious Brown Panther by 1/2L, but then eclipsed that performance when returned to a more suitable trip in the Hardwicke Stakes over 1m4f at Royal Ascot. Making all he beat Eagle Top and Postponed by 3 3/4L and a nose in a controversial race. Some may consider him a fortuitous winner but this observer wouldn’t agree. Considering Sir Michael’s supreme talent with the mature thoroughbred, further progress can be anticipated and it will be no surprise to see him involved on Saturday.

Another, who one feels has his best days in front of him, is the Luca Cumani trained Postponed. He has never won at the top level, but went very close at the Curragh in May. Racing over an inadequate 1m2f, he was only beaten a nk and a shd by Al Kazeem and Fascinating Rock. He was then involved in that barging match with Eagle Top in the Hardwicke Stakes where his pilot, Adam Kirby did him absolutely no favours. By the all conquering Stallion Dubawi, a much improved performance is in prospect.

Selection: Snow Sky

E.W. : Postponed

King George VI and Queen Elizabeth I I Stakes Betting Tips 1m4f Ascot Saturday.

2015 Epsom Derby Betting Tips

2015 Epsom Derby Betting Tips

Ryan Moore partners the Galileo colt Giovanni Canaletto, and if he won he would be giving his sire a record equalling fourth win in the race.

Unfortunately, our selection for last week’s Achilles Stakes at Haydock, Muthmir, dodged the meeting and went to Chantilly instead, where He won a 5f highly competitive Group 2 beating last years Prix De L’Abbe runner up, Catcall, emphasising yet again what a progressive sprinter He is. Definitley one to bear in mind for the Kings Stand Stakes at the Royal Meeting. However Saturday sees the 235th renewal of the world’s greatest classic, so let’s hope our selection(s) at least make it to the start this week.

Aidan O’Brien is trying to win his fourth Derby in a row, and perhaps even more astonishingly equal his great namesake, Vincent O’Brien’s record of six victories. If He does it won’t be with his English and Irish 2000gns winner Gleneagles, as he has been withdrawn. However he has three left in, Hans Holbein, Giovanni Canaletto, and Kilimanjaro, and I suppose any of the three could prove to be a super sub. If the Montjeu colt Hans Holbein wins, he would be giving his sire a record breaking fifth win in the race. Interestingly He was a very late foal, and surprisingly He was still two weeks short of His third birthday when winning the Chester Vase (1m4 1/2f soft) on May 7th. (He beat the second horse home that day, Storm the Stars, rather more easily than market leader Golden Horn managed on his debut at Nottingham last October.) Bred on very similar lines to Irish Derby, and Gold Gup winner, Fame and Glory, stamina is not going to be an issue, and it is not difficult to imagine him under Seamie Heffernan making Saturday’s renewal a real staying test. Certainly if it comes up soft he would have to be on the short list.

Ryan Moore partners the Galileo colt Giovanni Canaletto, and if he won he would be giving his sire a record equalling fourth win in the race. As a full brother to the 2013 winner Ruler of The World, he is certainly bred for the job, and indeed demonstrated his need for a trip in his last race, the 1m2f Gallinule stakes at the Curragh. It took him some time to get going, but was putting in his best work at the finish. With most of the O’Brien horses needing a run, this was quite a smart performance, so with Moore up and a further 2f to travel he is one to fear at the weekend.

John Gosden’s son of Cape Cross, Golden Horn, has been all the rage since winning the Dante Stakes at York from his stablemate, Jack Hobbs, and Andrew Balding’s Elm Park. Clearly the best horse on the day, some, considering his pedigree, have doubts about his ability to reproduce the performance over another 1 1/2f at Epsom. His sire was an out and out miler, and despite having got the Derby winner Sea the Stars, and the Oaks winner Ouija Board, not all his offspring stay middle distances. On the distaff his dam Fleche D’or, is an unraced daughter of miler Dubai Destination, and while her first foal, Eastern Belle, is a listed race winner over 1m2f, she is by a grade 1 winner over 1m4f. The jury remains out on his stamina credentials, but to this observer he certainly wasn’t stopping at York.

Having won the Group1 Racing Post Trophy, from which four Derby winners have come since 2002, Andrew Balding’s Phoenix Reach colt Elm Park, must be considered. Not bred in the purple, his sire was a multiple Group1 winner over 1m4f who does transmit stamina to many of his offspring, but until Elm Park came along had never produced a group winner. His dam Lady Brona was an 80 rated miler, and is a half sister to the fairly useful staying hurdler Tweedledrum. Hardly the pedigree of a potential Derby winner, you might say, but his racecourse performances speak for themselves. Winning his first attempt at Group2 level (Newmarket 1m gd/fm) at the end of September, he readily took the Group1 Racing Post Trophy four weeks later. He was withdrawn from the 2000gns because of the firm ground, and instead made his seasonal debut in the Dante Stakes, where he ran far too freely, took it up 3f from home, and faded in the last 150yds. We can expect a much improved performance from this very solid colt at the weekend, and it would be no surprise to see him involved at the business end.

Dermot Weld’s Shamardal colt Zawraq has won his only two races, and if making it to the start, (had a set back in training) is considered. Beautifully bred on the distaff, there are few stamina doubts, but his now 13yo sire has yet to make an impression in either of the Epsom classics. However this rapidly improving colt, with his very amenable temperament, who should handle the preliminaries well, must have serious prospects of adding to the hugely impressive C.V. of the master of Rosewall House.

Selection: Giovanni Canaletto.

E.W. : Elm Park.