Latest Royal Ascot Tips
Our own regal tipster Dionysus will provide his expert analysis for Royal Ascot, as soon as the sun starts to shine and the jumpers go off to grass. Check back for ante-post tips in the weeks before and daily previews of all the big races.
Ascot is predicted to get significant overnight rain which would change ground conditions notably, and showers are forecast
right through the day. Six of the 14 runners lined up at Epsom in the Oaks, but that race was a major anticlimax as they went
no pace and there was serious trouble in running.
The Fugue would likely have won had she not been nearly brought down before halfway, and in making up so much ground confirmed the impression made in the Musidora when she slammed Twirl, showing a great turn of foot on faster ground. John Gosden felt conditions made a difference that day and was talking of the French Oaks should Epsom get plenty of rain, so the weather forecast is a big worry ahead of this race and she could well drift right out from the current 2/1.
Shirocco Star and Vow were second and fourth in the Oaks, though both benefited from racing in the first half-dozen; Vow especially who tracked the winner Was. Shirocco Star holds more appeal here as she would have been happier with a stronger test and won't have any problems if the ground gets significantly softer. The same certainly applies to Kailani, sent off 6/1 at Epsom after a 7L beating of Hazel Lavery in the Pretty Polly on official soft. She got bumped early and didn't handle the track in the Classic, but still came from last to finish 6L seventh. By Monsun out of Guineas and Oaks winner Kazzia, a proper test with some cut should be ideal.
These four fillies who come from the Oaks currently occupy four of the top five places in the betting and it's likely the pecking order will change once more on Thursday. The exception is Princess Highway, who tries to emulate her dam who won this race 10 years ago for the same connections. She's 2-2 this year and it has clearly always been the plan, but she's been described as a fast-ground filly so the race may come a day late. Momentary was a touch fortunate to hold off Shirocco Star at Newbury last month, but that was only her second race and is open to lots of improvement so must come into considerations. Pink Damsel is even less experienced with one start, but she's bred to be good and is being nibbled in the betting.
It might pay to wait until we see what effect the rain has on the going, but looking at the forecast Ascot is going to get pelted so it's worth stepping in to oppose The Fugue now, and Godophin's Kailani appeals as the one to relish conditions the most.