Tuesday 19th June
ASCOT 2.30 5 Rhododendrun - 1 point win / 5 Deauville - 1 point each way / 8 Lord Glitters - 1/2 point each way (WH / LADS / CORAL/ BV / PP to 4th place)
The opening race is over the straight mile track and only time will tell if there is any significant draw bias. RHODODENDRUN broke our hearts a bit when pipping our main tip LIGHTNING SPEAR on the line in the Lockinge at Newbury a few weeks back. They re-oppose here and whilst LS was unlucky that day, this is Ascot and I think the obvious one of those pair is RHODODENDRUN. It is a horse that I have always thought "does enough" but no more and at around 3/1 the 1 point win bet covers my stake on two I really fancy at bigger each way odds, especially with many leading Bookies paying to 4th place.
I am not convinced the drop in trip will suit Benbatl, Suedois could be over-priced and is one who may be better suited to a fast run mile race and another who I think could outrun odds is Zonderland, its form ties in with Lightning Spear and both Suedois and Znderland came very close to being tips.
My two tips though will be the favourites stable mate DEAUVILLE and also LORD GLITTERS.
DEAUVILLE was third in this in 2017, on form rating that was its best ever run, Course form is vital here, especially on the straight track and it is fully tuned up and fit now and with a prominent running style could be the one they are all chasing from stall 10 and if there is any barging in behind (often the case here) it can have what they think is the pick of the fastest strip of ground. LORD GLITTERS is a bit more speculative, the concern is the firmness of the ground, but there will be a lovely covering of grass; they have watered to take the sting out of the turf and it has a piece of winning Course and Distance form that suggests to me it could be over-priced and over looked. It has been rested since an excellent run in The Lincoln, straight 1 mile is his forte and with Jamie Spencer in the saddle, probably the best Course rider in this type of race.
ASCOT 5.35 8 Kidmenever - 1 point each way / 2 Mnarchs Glen - 1 point each way / 15 Yucatan - 1 point each way
This 10 furlong race used to be a "handicap" and although now not one, the respective handicap marks when assessed against the mostly level weights have to be taken in to account. I can see BIG COUNTRY making a bold bid up front here from stall 2; the nagging fear is he slips the field, if he does "fair play" but what he will do is ensure a really good pace and I don't see this being tactical. The proverbial roof will come off the Stands if The Queens FABRICATE wins, it has solid each way chances of a place but in my humble opinion, will just come up short. A number of strong contenders are drawn high ad that is a slight disadvantage and just puts me off the likes of Laraaib and Sharja Bridge; whilst I just think Mirage Dancer will struggle despite the pace angle, back down at this trip.
Mt 3 against the field all with outstanding chances at nice odds with all major bookies paying to 4th place are; KIDMENVER who has Course and Distance form, a nice draw, surely prepared and trained from this and from easily the better of The Godolphin yards at present. The Gosden trained MONARCHS GLEN clearly has ability; has flattered to deceive a few times but could and should get a lovely tow off Big Country, and is in the "could be anything" type of improver category, that Gosden does very well with. The O'Brien yard's best chance here could be YUCATAN; it gets its optimum ground and trip conditions, rarely runs a bad race in less than ideal conditions and a bit of new headgear here could be the final key to unlock the minimal improvement it needs to get a deserved big pot.