Royal Ascot Preview

Fri 09 June 2017

With Royal Ascot less than just two weeks away, the Richard Hannon team will be coming into the royal meeting with a strong contingent of horses. The stable has been in good form and we will look to keep the momentum going as we approach the opening day.

Godolphin’s BARNEY ROY will represent us in the Group 1 St James’s Palace Stakes. The son of Excelebration was last seen finishing second to Churchill in the 2000 Guineas. ‘BARNEY ROY has come out really well from that run and with a stronger pace he would have finished much closer. The mile at Ascot is right up his street and I can see him putting it up to Churchill in a big way.’

Richard will have a score of two year-olds to represent the stable headlined by DE BRUYNE HORSE who impressed last time out in the Woodcote Stakes on Epsom Oaks day, improving well from his maiden win at Ripon at the end of May. He will head to the Coventry all being well. ‘He is a progressive sort and won well at Epsom in spite of the track. He has come out of the Woodcote in great form and continues to take everything in his stride. He is a horse that is still learning his trade and should improve again next time.’ Also likely to head to the Coventry is the Al Shaqab colour-bearer DENAAR. The son of Acclamation graduated at first time of asking going five furlongs at Chelmsford on the all-weather, and then remained unbeaten when stretching out to six furlongs at Newbury last time in the Olympic Glory Stakes. ‘He showed he was very tough at Newbury and that run will have brought him on a lot mentally. I would expect him to improve and run a big race.’

NATURAL who won on debut going six and a half furlongs at Doncaster on Derby Day will head to the Albany Stakes. ‘She is a filly with plenty of speed and the six furlongs should suit her well. She won impressively on debut and I think she is a filly with a lot of ability. She should run a very big race.’ TAJAANUS won well on debut at Newmarket on less than ideal going. ‘She has come on plenty for that run and will be much better back on top of the ground. She did everything wrong at HQ and still managed to win.’

ELYSIUM DREAM runs in the Chesham going seven furlongs. ‘She did well to win last time at Windsor having just gotten her head in front on the line. The further she goes the better she goes and I think she would have a real chance over the stiff seven furlongs.’

Qatar Racing’s other two year old runner is OUT OF THE FLAMES, who goes to the post in the Queen Mary. She was last seen going five furlongs at Windsor and improved from her first run to win. ‘This filly came on markedly, improving plenty from her debut at Ascot. She has plenty of pace and has been working very well since her last start. She should be right there at the finish.’

The very competitive and very valuable Royal Hunt Cup will see GEORGE WILLIAM head to post. ‘He has strengthened up nicely this year and has been in great form. He was unlucky not to finish closer in the Victoria Cup last time and back at a track he likes over a mile he should run a big race.’

The plan with OH THIS IS US and KOOL KOMPANY is to head to the Group 1 Queen Anne Stakes. They are two nice horses who both ran super races in the Diomed Stakes. ‘They both had traffic problems at Epsom but both ran very well. The plan is to head to Ascot and off a strong pace they should both be right there. Neil Werrett is coming over from Australia with a load of the guys and this is a very exciting time for them.’

The Brittania Handicap is for three year olds over the mile. With a small team lining up, the main hopes come from SON OF THE STARS and THE GRAPE ESCAPE. ‘They are unexposed colts who should be very strong on the line. They have been working well and I am very happy with the hand I have to play.’

TUPI who has been in the form of his life after winning at Doncaster on the opening day has two options at Ascot. ‘He could either head for the Wokingham or to the Golden Jubilee. I will decide closer to the time but he is in some form and I would expect him to run well wherever we run.’

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