By News Team
Last Updated: 21st April 2021
The final day of the 2020 edition of Royal Ascot is upon us and Nick Luck, who has been in sparkling form this week, has previewed it all.
Haggas can take the opener with Aplomb
One last roll of the dice for Ascot this year, and the weather has done its best to make this a challenge if you’re trying to pick winners a couple of days in advance. It is fairly certain, however, that there will be plenty of juice in the ground on Saturday even if there are two drying days.
With that in mind, I am looking for cast iron finishers over six furlongs in the three races over that trip, beginning with the inaugural Silver Wokingham (12:40pm). I am struck by the fact that APLOMB (15/2) posted his best performance here at Ascot on soft ground and feel that his stable’s horses are needing their first runs of the season, hence he should improve on his comeback run over an inadequate and very fast five furlongs at Newmarket.
I’ll also be taking a close look each-way at Dirty Rascal at a bigger price of 25/1. He improved for his new trainer at the back of last year and is quite interesting cutting back to this trip – he won’t mind a bit of cut either.
Romance could be feeling Happy
HAPPY ROMANCE gets the nod in the Queen Mary (1:15pm) at 8/1. She may only have won an effective match at Sandown last weekend, but her relative running with the runner-up suggests she had improved a ton since her Newmarket debut behind Sacred. She’s a big, strong unit who should want further than this in due course and will be suited by the track.
Crowley’s fine week can continue in the Coventry
There have been few more impressive juvenile performances so far than that posted by QAADER at Newbury, and he is taken to continue Jim Crowley’s mighty week in the Coventry (1:50pm) at 9/2. He was a model professional, quickening smartly off the front end and running a very good time. The stable has a good record in this race, and I’ll be disappointed if he can’t feature.
Wild can Run over her Coronation rivals
The Coronation Stakes (2:25pm) looks quite hard to read. I would have been all over the US filly Sharing but there must now have slight reservations over her ability to be as effective on the ground.
With that in mind, I wonder whether RUN WILD (9/2) might be able to dominate as she did at Newmarket – the drop back in trip is possibly an inspired move, and she has decent form on all types of ground. Love aside, I have doubts over the depth of the Guineas form.
Back Pinatubo to bounce back in the St James’s Palace
Unless Palace Pier is a superstar, I am confident that PINATUBO will win the St James’s Palace (3:00pm) at 7/4.
He and Wichita are clearly very tightly matched on their Guineas running, but Pinatubo may be better suited by this turning mile and can take a bigger step forward. I am not sure soft ground is what any of these want, but he was comfortably on top of the Ballydoyle runner when they last met on soft in the Dewhurst.
Charlie Hills can take another big Royal Ascot sprint
The Diamond Jubilee (3:35pm) is a race in which almost every runner will have their supporters, but I am hoping to get a glimpse of the KHAADEM that we saw winning the Stewards’ Cup at Goodwood last year, a performance which suggested he could win just about any sprint. There were excuses for both subsequent defeats, and vibes from the stable are very positive. He has form with cut earlier in his career and is my fancy at 7/1.
Tinto for me in the Wokingham
If I like Aplomb in the consolation race, I have to like TINTO in the Wokingham Stakes (4:10pm) proper at 12/1. Conditions look perfect for him, and his trainer has her horses in fine order.
At bigger odds, I will definitely be backing NO NONSENSE at 28/1. He is a massive horse, who hadn’t grown into himself last year, but nonetheless showed huge promise on occasions. He’s from the family of Lochsong, Lochangel and any number of other superb sprinters and should be open to enormous improvement.
Who Dares might Win the lucky last
WHO DARES WINS is an uninspired choice against Mekong in the Queen Alexandra Stakes (4:40pm).