Royal Ascot – Day One Betting Tips
St James's Palace Stakes
Royal Ascot will begin with an odds on favourite on Tuesday as Ribchester tackles the Queen Anne Stakes but the star of the show will run later in the afternoon as a dual Classic winner looks to stamp his authority on the three-year-old division.
Churchill to continue his winning ways
If we didn’t have different opinions on racing, sport and life in general would be pretty boring. Churchill’s English 2000 Guineas win seemed to spark a difference of opinion from different race readers.
There are some who feel that he was a shade fortuitous to win the opening Classic of the year as he had a much clearer passage on the Rowley Mile compared to Barney Roy, while others just believe that Churchill is a professional race horse who does what he has to win and will never win by far.
At Newmarket there was no doubt that Barney Roy’s connections would have loved the run that Churchill got,
…but this horse is unbeaten in his last seven starts and just finds a way of getting the job done, even when it doesn’t look likely.
At Newmarket he was winning on his first start of the season, compared to Barney Roy who had a run previously.
At the Curragh Churchill won the Irish Guineas despite the ground turning against him and we’ve seen Aidan O’Brien’s horses win these sort of races for years, season defining for some people, and yet still they manage to show improvement throughout the summer and keep winning. Churchill is set to be a prime example of that.
It’s the first day of Royal Ascot and maybe the layers will get a little brave as the day goes on but at the moment Churchill is 8/13 to win the St James’s Palace Stakes and you can have what you like on him. His unbeaten record isn’t going to be broken any time in the near future.
No stopping Harrington
The quality of the racing at Royal Ascot is top-heavy with some mouthwatering races on the opening day and the Irish challenge on the five-day fixture could well be top-heavy as well with a number of strong claims over the opening couple of days.
Jessica Harrington has been having an incredible time of things since the turn of the year and after taking Cheltenham by storm, she continued all the way through to the Punchestown Festival before starting the flat season with a bang.
Her claims for a first Royal Ascot winner were probably never stronger than they are going into this week and Brother Bear (5/1) is a worthy favourite in the Coventry Stakes.
Brother Bear is a two-time winner, impressing on both days and while the form of his two victories may not yet stack to much, it was the manner of his wins that really was impressive and he is expected to get the better of the Coolmore pair of Arawak and Murillo.
Aidan O’Brien trains impressive Tipperary winner Murillo, while Wesley Ward is responsible for Arawak and the Coventry is a tricky race as these juveniles are only starting to develop, but Brother Bear looks the real deal and 5/1 is there to be taken.
No kidding with Mullins
Depending on how favourite backers are getting on for the first half of the day, Thomas Hobson (4/1) could go off very short in the two and a half mile Ascot Stakes.
Willie Mullins booking Ryan Moore in Rich Ricci’s colours is a frightful combination, especially with a horse who was a decent performer on the flat and has ran with credit on his last two starts over hurdles, but 4/1 is very short.
As an each-way alternative, Mark Johnston’s Yorkidding (16/1) makes more appeal. The recent Haydock winner craves a trip and the fast ground at Ascot on Tuesday is ideal for him. The five-year-old was just closed down in the Chester Cup by Montaly and he is just a fairly consistent performer over staying trips on decent ground.
The handicapper might not be doing him any favours any more but he has got a good draw in six to find a nice early position in the race and at 16/1 looks a better each-way bet than lumping on Thomas Hobson at 4/1.
Brother Bear (5/1) – 3:05 Royal Ascot
Churchill (8/13) – 4:20 Royal Ascot
Yorkidding (16/1) EW – 5:00 Royal Ascot
*Prices correct at time of publication