Wednesday, June 17, 2015

Royal Ascot Day 2 - Back to Sprint

Ivawood goes back to sprint in the Jersey Stakes after two unsuccessful forays in the English and Irish Guineas at a mile. The son of Zebedee clearly lacks the stamina when competing at the highest level against top milers and seven furlongs seems to be his best distance. The opposition is solid but it's hard to see Ivawood out of the placings here although he will carry a penalty from his juvenile form. He is an each-way selection.

The Prince of Wales' Stakes looks to be a wide-open affair although Free Eagle has the edge in the market. First thing though is that it's regretful that California Chrome will miss the race due to a late injury. It's too bad because I would have laid him all day since I don't think he stood a chance against some quality turf middle-distance European horses on offer. He might be good on dirt although I would question the quality of horses he beat in his Classic season in the US. The thing is he hardly stood a chance running against Group-calibre horses on grass. Free Eagle is definitely top-class but very fragile. He's coming back a big lay-off and I suspect he might be short of fitness and will come on for the run. Same for Ectot who makes his seasonal re-appearance and will also be better suited to a mile and a half distance. I like the looks of The Grey Gatsby and Western Hymn. The former was a disappointing fourth in the Tattersalls Gold Cup 3 weeks ago but he usually alternates the good and the bad races. On his best form, he should play a major role here. Western Hymn is 2 for 2 this year and is on the up. He had to battle to beat Arab Spring in his last race and there is a concern that the 20 day rest might just be on the short side. John Gosden's stable is on a tear and Western Hymn looks to be a good place prospect at current market odds.

Each-way: Ivawood
Place: The Grey Gatsby, Western Hymn

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