Royal Ascot Day 2 Tips - Wednesday, June 15
Race 1 - Queen Mary Stakes Tips
Wesley Ward boasts a fantastic record in this Group Two. After first winning this race with Jealous Again in 2009. he's struck with Acapulco, Lady Aurelia and Campanelle in the last seven years, while also saddling the runner-up on three occasions.
Given her trainer's superb record, it's hard to look past LOVE REIGNS, who clocked an excellent time when winning on debut at Keeneland.
Unlike all of Ward's other Queen Mary winners, Love Reigns started out over five-and-a-half-furlongs. Love Reigns was well-backed and proceeded to bolt in under Irad Ortiz Jnr by almost ten lengths.
Lightning-fast ground on day two will certainly suit this daughter of former Middle Park and July Cup winner, U S Navy Flag.
There's plenty of scope for an each-way bet in this race too, so I'll take a gamble on LADY BEANO at a massive price.
Adrian Keatley's filly settled nicely behind a swift pace on debut at Catterick and was forced to muscle her way between runners to get involved, but once she found open air, Keatley's newcomer quickened up stylishly to win by a couple of lengths.
Gerald Mosse takes the ride on Wednesday and she can outrun her odds.
Race 2 - Queen's Vase Tips
Giving another chance to NAHANNI, who was our each-way selection in the Epsom Derby two weeks ago. Charlie Appleby's charge won well at Kempton and Leicester earlier in the season and earned his spot in the Derby field by winning the Blue Riband Trial at Epsom back in April.
Expecting Adam Kirby to take a prominent early position on Nahanni, who had made all the running during both his previous runs over the trip. As the gates broke open, Nahanni was the slowest away and was still out the back as the field turned for home, with Kirby managing to weave his way between beaten horsesto finish seventh, crossing the line just behind the two Ballydoyle runners.
When the horses arrived at the start in the Derby, fireworks were set off above the Epsom grandstand. Commentator, Richard Hoiles noted on two occasions that Nahanni had not taken kindly to the pyrotechnics, which would explain the unexpectedly lacklustre start that cost him any chance of contending.
Nahanni is an out-and-out stayer, so seeing out this trip won't be a problem, while William Buick and Charlie Appleby teamed up to win this with Kemari 12 months ago.
Race 3 - Prince Of Wales's Stakes Tips
Race 4 - Duke Of Cambridge Stakes Tips
Two Group One winners head the betting for this excellent renewal of the Duke Of Cambridge. however we'll take both on with French raider, SIBILA SPAIN.
Generally, French runners are more effective on softer ground. Yet, Sibila Spain isn't your typical French raider.
Christopher Head's filly has a quick-ground pedigree, being by Frankel and out of a Listed winner who's best performances came on good ground, with both of Sibila Spain's pattern victories coming on good surfaces.
Aurelien Lemaitre timed his late challenge from the rear to perfection in the Prix du Muguet, where Sibila Spain saw off a classy field including Dilawar, Hurricane Dream and Duhail, while Lemaitre should have plenty of early pace to aim for on Wednesday.
Sibila Spain - who was only beaten a length in two 10-furlong Group Ones last season - proved she has enough finishing speed to contend over this eight-furlong trip.
Race 5 - Royal Hunt Cup Tips
Real World powered down the inside rail to claim a stunning victory in this handicap last year, with that performance is somewhat of an anomaly, as 12 of the past 15 winners of this handicap came from a double-figure barrier.
Often, the stand's side is the best place to be on the straight mile at Ascot, so we're going to back two runners drawn high, the first being DARK SHIFT, who won here at Ascot on debut and twice as a three-year-old last season.
After a poor run on his return in the Victoria Cup, where Charlie Hills' grey was drawn miles away from the pace in stall four, Dark Shift returned to form with a superb victory at Nottingham last month.
William Buick's mount will carry a five-pound penalty for that win, but he's due to go up to 98, so Dark Shift is two pounds well-in at the weights. He looks like a leading contender.
Drawn six gates higher in 21 is FANTASTIC FOX, who caught the eye when finishing third behind Totally Charming at Epsom last time out.
Roger Varian's charge gave himself plenty to do that day and stayed on well just to finish third, picking up again after hitting traffic a furlong from home.
Fantastic Fox will run off the same mark of 98, despite clocking an RPR of 104 at Epsom and David Egan's mount was beaten less than a length in the Porsche Handicap over this track/trip last season, while the most impressive win of his career so far came on fast ground.
Race 6 - Windsor Castle Stakes Tips
The Windsor Castle is always a tough assignment for punters, with MEHMAR perhaps the most overlooked in the market.
After struggling to see out six furlongs behind Blackbeard on his second start at Group Three level, Mehmar bounced back to form over at Tipperary, where O'Callaghan's juvenile finished well from a wide position to push the talented Lady Tilbury all the way to the line.
Stall five isn't ideal, but Mehmar has got some decent runners on his side of the track, like Little Big Bear and Chateau, so hoping he won't be inconvenienced by that low draw.
He could break his duck on the grandest of stages.
Race 7 - Kensington Palace Stakes Tips
Over this trip on the round course at Ascot, the bend into the straight arrives very quickly. Therefore, a low draw can be an advantage, as runners attempt to slot in from the wider stalls. Last year, Lola Showgirl and Ffion were first and second going into the turn and remained in that order through the line, as the rest of the field failed to peg back David Loughnane's bottom weights.
Well-backed favourite, Haziya likes to be ridden prominently, so she could be drawn perfectly down in stall three. At the prices, though, we'd rather back the top-weight ANGEL POWER - drawn in gate four - who's dropped down to an appealing handicap mark.
Roger Varian's mare reached a rating of 108 at the end of the 2020 season, following wins in the Darley Stakes and a Group Two out in Italy. Angel Power only ran three times last season, two of which came at Saint-Cloud during October, where she finished a very close second in the Listed Prix Dahlia.
Varian's five-year-old was well-beaten by the dominant My Astra last time out, but was only beaten a length in another Listed race on her reappearance at Nottingham.
A run of five defeats see Angel Power enter this handicap with a mark of 101 and top conditional, Harry Davies takes five valuable pounds off her back.