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Royal Ascot Gold Cup Tips - Stradivarius to be denied historic win?
- The Royal Ascot Gold Cup takes place on day three of Royal Ascot on Thursday 17th June
- Stradivarius goes for a historic fourth-straight Gold Cup win
- Spanish Mission is our each-way selection
Stradivarius has won the last three editions (Getty Images)
The middle day of Royal Ascot is headlined by the Royal Ascot Gold Cup, one of the most prestigious races in all of flat racing.
Yeats is currently the only horse to win this Group One four times, but Stradivarius will bid to match that incredible feat on Thursday.
We've taken a look through the betting for this year's Ascot Gold Cup and picked out our best bets.
2021 Royal Ascot Gold Cup Runners
Despite many, including John Gosden, fearing the ground had gone against Stradivarius, Frankie Dettori's mount produced the performance of his career when bolting up by ten lengths at Ascot last season. Stradivarius put a couple of poor performances in the autumn behind him in April, returning to action with a routine victory in the Sagaro Stakes, and he remains the best stayer on the planet.
Subjectivist bounded into Gold Cup contention out in Meydan this spring, bolting up from the front to win the Dubai Gold Cup by six lengths. Mark Johnston's stayer will probably look to make the running again, and he should have no trouble seeing out this extended trip.
As Stradivarius got stuck in the mud on Champions Day, Trueshan powered to an impressive victory in the Long Distance Cup. Alan King's star ran a blinder to finish so close to Japan on his reappearance in the Ormonde Stakes, where he gave five pounds to a horse rated 123 and only went down by three-quarters of a length.
All eyes were on Sir Ron Priestley and Santiago ahead of the Yorkshire Cup, but Spanish Mission crashed their party, motoring to victory under William Buick. Buick retains his spot in the saddle on Thursday, and I'm sure Spanish Mission will attract some each-way support.
After finishing a very close third behind Stradivarius in the Goodwood Cup, many expected Santiago to rise to the head of the staying ranks. Aidan O'Brien's colt has struggled for form a little since then, but the return to Royal Ascot - where he won the Queen's Vase so impressively last season - could spark a return to top form.
Last year's Derby winner, Serpentine has also been handed a Gold Cup entry, along with that year's Epsom third Amhran Na Bhifiann. Donnacha O'Brien could run Emperor Of The Sun, while the eldest of Aidan's sons, Joseph O'Brien has Twilight Payment and Master Of Reality in the mix.
Princess Zoe could represent Anthony Mullins, while Ben Lilly, Rip Van Lips and last year's runner-up, Nayef Road could also make an appearance at Ascot.
2021 Royal Ascot Gold Cup Tips
Stradivarius deserves his spot in the history books, and I wouldn't put anyone off backing the favourite, even at odds-on. However, for the purposes of a single bet, I'm going to take an each-way punt on SPANISH MISSION.
Andrew Balding's five-year-old seemed to have matured last season, claiming impressive three-length wins in the Chester Cup and the 18-furlong Doncaster Cup. Andrew Balding's charge loved quick ground out in Saudi Arabia, where he finished second in the highly-lucrative Red Sea Turf Handicap, and gave Santiago a sound thrashing in the Yorkshire Cup, when giving his younger rival three-pounds at the weights.
Spanish Mission has finished behind both Trueshan and Subjectivist in the last 12 months, but Buick's mount hated heavy ground on Champions Day and found himself a little outpaced around that sharp Meydan track. Good ground around Ascot should be much more suitable, and he's more than capable of challenging for the win.