BACK-TO-BACK HUNT CUPS FOR DAQMAN AT 12-1 AND 28-1: Daqman did it again yesterday! He followed up last year’s sensational Royal Hunt Cup triumph on Invisible Man (WON 28-1) with a 19.0 Betdaq value bet, Julienas (WON 12-1), in yesterday’s renewal.
THREE WINNING BETS IN ONE RACE: In the same race, he targeted the low draw for place lays, and sure enough Mont Agel (21st of 28 at 14-1) and Invincible Soul (last at 18-1) could not cope on the far side.
THREE LAYS OUT OF THREE: Daqman made it three lays out of three on the day by also opposing Dubai Queen (2nd 9-2) for the win.
TWO JACKPOT RACES UP OUT OF TWO: The Hunt Cup winner gave him his second jackpot from two races in Ascot week so far: on the first day, he had Power (WON 4-1).
2.30 Royal Ascot (Norfolk Stakes): High numbers continued to dominate on the straight course (Hunt Cup result by stall 24-30-25) but they noticeably raced up the middle and, in the last yesterday, they bunched midfield and then bulged over to the far side, stall 1 beating 10 and 6. Keep it simple jockeys, we’ve got winners to find, just like you!
Richard Hannon (Crown Dependency and two others) and Tom Dascombe (Pyman’s Theory and Bear Behind) have looked good on the two year-old front at the meeting so far, and Ed Dunlop (Burwaaz) and Paul Cole (Silverheels) have a solid record in juvenile conditions races on this course.
But the word is that Everyday Dave is the best of Wesley Ward’s US raiders this week, and his blaze-the-trail style from stall 16 should drag the high numbers in his wake. Other front-runners here all seem to be drawn low and, sectionally, the second and third furlongs on the far rail have been slower ground, disadvantaging Bapak China, who beat Tuesday’s Windsor Castle winner, Frederick Engels, at Hamilton.
The grey Silverheels was impressive in his Windsor maiden but has been held up in his work. Burwaaz and Pyman’s Theory are sired by Exceed And Excel who has a tremendous record on the track but, along with Bannock, the horse she beat in the National Stakes, Pyman’s Theory is drawn low, and Burwaaz has drifted like a lonely dog on a raft this morning.
3.05 Royal Ascot (Ribblesdale Stakes): Like Lolly For Dolly yesterday, Bainimpire seems to thrive on her racing and tries to make the same step up from Group 3; the Irish used to farm this race.
But they haven’t scored since 2002, with Godolphin – three out of seven – taking over, and represented here by Rumh (not to be confused with Paul Cole’s Rimth). Six out of 10 winners had been placed in an Oaks but there’s nothing of that calibre here, though Zain Al Boldan and Field Of Miracles were one-two in the Lingfield Oaks Trial and Musharakaat was fourth at Chester to subsequent Epsom oaks runner-up, Wonder Of Wonders, and both Highest (2nd) and Sunday Bess (4th) were in the frame behind the subsequent Oaks winner, Dancing Rain, at Newbury earlier.
It was Rumh’s first time back when she was third to Izzi Top and Dancing Rain in the Swettenham and she scored over the same Newbury course afterwards. The collateral form with Dancing Rain, therefore, suggests Rumh and Highest, but Highest needs rain and, without it, had drifted to 11.0 this morning.
So it’s Rumh for me, with Look At Me the best long shot (17.0 for a Ballydoyle?), likely to improve considerably for the step up in trip.
3.45 Royal Ascot (Ascot Gold Cup): This column is on Brigantin at 26.0 Betdaq value (archives June 9) for Andre Fabre, who won our Derby, to now steal our gold, and Fame And Glory has been brought along the Yeats route By Ballydoyle.
But six-year-olds have much the best record in the race, which requires maturity and stamina, so the dogged Duncan, runner-up to Harbinger in the Hardwicke on the course, has to go on the short list.
Snag is that neither Duncan nor Fame And Glory has won beyond 14 furlongs; they are in unknown territory, distance wise. Rain would be against Askar Tau and Kasbah Bliss, but in favour of Tastahil, The Betchworth Kid and Brigantin.
Holberg ran a solid race in the Henry 11 Stakes, which has provided 15 winners of this in 37 years, and it is a matter of which one stays: Duncan, Fame And Glory or Holberg.
I need a place bet on Brigantin to cover my ante-post win stake but I’ve a feeling this is very much Godolphin’s day and Holberg’s win in the 2m Queen’s Vase as a three-year-old puts him right up there for this. Duncan will have to adapt his style of running up with the pace but Fame And Glory, classy enough to get close to the frame in the Arc (fith, hampered) is the danger to all.
4.25 Royal Ascot (Britannia Handicap): Why, ask my readers from their meeting in the phone box, are you so stuck on stats. I’m not stuck – I’ll bend with conditions – but, with 30 runners, you have to start somewhere, and stats tend to sift the grain from the husks of older horses and poor contenders.
The stats here say: 11 of the last 12 winners had raced within 45 days, and 17 of the last 20 had not run in more than two handicaps; in fact, nine out of 12 had had only five or six starts.
I’ve been through it a dozen times and end up with the best guess that Baptist, who beat Chain Lightning last year, and is 20.0 on Betdaq this morning, will improve for his first run back when badly drawn. Has the plum stall 32 here.
5.00 Royal Ascot Remember Pisco Sour’s attempt to run away with the Dante; well, there’s no Carlton House to beat this time. But will he last out?
Fury has demoted the Tazahum form. Hunter’s Light and Marksmanship have been saved up for the race. Slumber and Moriarty already have Group-3 experience, but the one I like at big offers is Happy Today (38.0), unlucky to get beaten on the nod at Newmarket before being slowly away in the Guineas.
5.35 Royal Ascot (King George V Stakes): Brown Panther (6.8) and Charles Camoin come from races which have been massive guides to this result, but Mark Johnston has won the race four times and is five-handed.
Apache has a high handicap mark and Group-1 entries must have registered with the handicapper. The form of Purification (7.6) has been well boosted and is near-Classic standard on a line through Genius Beast.
BET 4pts win (nap) EVERYDAY DAVE (2.30 Royal Ascot)
BET 5pts win RUMH, and 1.25pts win and place LOOK AT ME (3.05 Royal Ascot)
WIN-30 JACKPOT: 11pts win FAME AND GLORY, 3.3pts win HOLBERG and 1pt place BRIGANTIN (3.45 Royal Ascot) already ante-post 0.5pts win BRIGANTIN at 26.0.
BET 1pt win and place BAPTIST (4.25 Royal Ascot)
BET 3.8pts win MARKSMANSHIP, 2.6pts win HUNTER’S LIGHT and 0.5pts win and place HAPPY TODAY (5.00 Royal Ascot)
BET 3.4pts win BROWN PANTHER AND 3pts win PURIFICATION (5.35 Royal Ascot)