Disaster…. Day two at Ascot was unmitigated and relentless in its sheer awfulness. Not only did the Major’s selections not win, several I shortlisted did win. The best example being the 12/1 Strong Suit who I was so close to backing it was untrue. Frustration is not a good recipe for further betting, say no more.
I very nearly abandoned ship and offered no suggestion for Day Three but for what it is worth (not a lot this week it seems), I give you some of my thoughts for day three.
2.30 The Norfolk Stakes
I would dearly love to back Bapak Chinta who had Frederik Engels, Mondays victorious youngster behind last time out. However, while my strong belief is that he is the best horse in the race, stall 2 might be difficult to overcome. This week the stand side bias has been notable and even if Bapak Chinta were to race the far side, he might be alone or without pace.
That said he is joined by what I think will be a popular Hannon / Hughes horse in Crown Dependency. An easy winner first time up, it is hard to deny connections look like they might play a part. Stall 5 means an honest 15/2.
The one I have settled on is Silverheels who is well drawn, like many could be anything, the booking of Moore looks interesting.
3.05 The Ribblesdale
This race looks a mess to solve.
The most obvious candidate is the one the Major opts for and that is Zain Al Boldan. If you put a line through her Oaks run, her previous form is as good as anything. Kieran Fallon is booked and I expect a big run from this girl.
3.45 Ascot Gold Cup
The Gold Cup is an enthralling contest and for my generation will always be associated with Yeats.
Rain could be hugely significant and it is in the forecast.
The significance is largely for the favourite. Fame and Glory is a very worthy head of the market horse and 2/1 is good value. The main risk is whether he will last stepped up to this trip, being from Montjeu. Extra rain and Good to Soft could make that ask tougher.
It is a lively outsider in Opinion Poll that the Major has selected – 22/1 is damn generous for one I suspect will step up to this marathon distance well and will happily roll in the mud if the good lord turns the taps on.
5.00 Tercentenary Stakes
I have had a look through the card and can see a number of potentials but am persuaded to give another chance to 20/1 shot Pisco Sour. This horse has some good soft ground experience so if the expected rain comes, he will not be inconvenienced. As a Dante third, I am hopeful to get a place.