It’s day four of Royal Ascot 2020 and Steven Dowler returns with another tactical attempt to take down the Boosted £10,000 Place 6. Read on for his Royal Ascot 2020 day 4 preview and join his Syndicate.
Royal Ascot 2020 day 4 preview
13.15 – Class 2 Handicap – 5f
We start the Royal Ascot 2020 day 4 preview with an exciting 5 furlong sprint race. Based on his two dominant victories at York and at Newcastle on his reappearance, ART POWER looks to have been let in here lightly off a mark of 97. Art Power was heavily supported in the market and made all of the running, showing sheer pace and power to see off the useful Magical Journey. The draw has played a major part this week with high numbers outperforming low numbers on all accounts, so with this progressive sort being handed stall 19, he has to be high on everybody’s shortlist.
Meanwhile, MIGHTY SPIRIT has a nice each-way chance. Her consistency can be seen from her previous nine outing where she finished in the frame six times before gaining a much deserved breakthrough success at Catterick last time out on her tenth racecourse experience. It is also worth pointing out that she finished sixth of 25 in the Group 2 Queen Mary at this meeting twelve months ago when beaten just under three lengths. I can’t find any negatives on her chance here to be honest. Therefore, the Richard Fahey trained three-year-old represents plenty of value in this wide-open contest.
Selections: ART POWER, MIGHTY SPIRIT
13.50 – Albany Stakes Group 3 – 6f
As mentioned previously, high drawn numbers have led the way overall at this years meeting, but I am quite keen on US raider FLYING ALETHA who will be ridden by William Buick. She wore blinkers on her debut when making all to win by 5 1/2 lengths at Gulfstream, looking a filly out of the top draw. Stall 3 could be a slight concern and hinder her chances but connections are no stranger to success at this track and if she is as good as Wesley Ward thinks she is, then we could be looking at the next Lady Aurelia.
This race has been dominated by high drawn numbers in recent years, so I think it’s worth throwing in a couple of nice types who are drawn high. DANDALLA made a winning debut, looking potentially useful. This is much deeper, and she does need to settle better, but she could be above average and I’m willing to take a chance on her.
Roger Varian has a strong hand in the race, and I was taken by UNDERTAKE on debut at Lingfield. She had taken a while to get going but was fully in command at the finish and better is to come. She’s drawn nicely in stall 12 for this rise in grade which gives her leading each-way claims.
Selections: FLYING ALETHA, DANDALLA, UNDERTAKE
14.25 – Norfolk Stakes – 5f
Many of the public’s nap of the day will no doubt be EYE OF HEAVEN who has been heavily supported in the market all week. He was very impressive on debut when comfortably beating Get It and Tactical. That form has worked out nicely with both of those finishing first and fourth in the Windsor Castle this week. There is more to come from this beautifully bred colt and he should take all of the beating for Mark Johnston and Frankie Dettori.
This hasn’t been the strongest of weeks for Aidan O’Brien so far, but LIPIZZANER looks the solid alternative to the favourite. He’s yet to win in two starts, but has been beaten just half-a-length on each occasion finishing second and today’s stiff 5f test should be right up his street. I wouldn’t put it past the master handler peaking Lipizzaner to produce his best performance in the biggest race of his career to date, so he’s worth an interest being Ballydoyle’s only representative.
Selections: EYE OF HEAVEN, LIPIZZANER
15.00 – Hardwicke Stakes – 1m3f
I wouldn’t normally be confident about a horse who hasn’t won for quite some time, but Epsom Derby winner ANTHONY VAN DYCK should prove hard to beat as he bids to get back to winning ways. He might be rated 2lb inferior to Elarqam (120) at 118, but we must remember Elarqam has yet to win a Group 1 race in his career, unlike Anthony Van Dyck who has already proven himself to be a top level performer.
Elarqam was well behind Anthony Van Dyck in last years Irish Champion Stakes, so he has work to do to turn the form around. The son of Galileo also finished second in last years Irish Derby before returning a luckless third in the Breeders’ Cup Turf. He made his seasonal debut when chasing home the high-class Ghaiyyath in the Coronation Cup with Defoe further behind in fifth.
On the basis of the brilliant record held by four-year-olds in the race, I can’t see past Anthony Van Dyck who should finally gain his first Group 1 success since collecting last years Epsom Derby. ELARQAM is obviously a good horse with his owners and Jim Crowley on a crest of wave this week. He should be in the mix at the business end of the race providing the step up in trip does actually suit.
Selections: ANTHONY VAN DYCK, ELARQAM
15.35 – Commonwealth Cup – 6f
One of my best bets of the entire day is PIERRE LAPIN representing Roger Varian who has his team in flying form this week. This progressive youngster won both his starts impressively last year which included the Group 2 Mill Reef Stakes at Newbury, and ever since that brilliant success, jockey Andrea Atzeni has talked him up as potentially one of the best horses he has ridden. Pierre Lapin hasn’t been seen for 272 days, but this race has long been his main target and I am hopeful he can enhance his tall reputation here.
GOLDEN HORDE will be on many punters radar since finishing an eye-catching second in the Group 1 Middle Park Stakes at Newmarket. He was fifth in last years Coventry Stakes at this track, and Clive Cox does extremely well with his sprinters. He might not have the same quality as champion sprinter Harry Angel did for connections, but he’s clearly a useful individual in his own right, and perhaps he could do what Harry Angel failed to do which is win the Commonwealth Cup being the top-rated horse in this tricky heat.
A chance can be given to ROYAL CRUSADE representing the boys in blue. He won much easier than the winning margin suggested on debut at Newmarket before narrowly touched off in the Champagne Stakes at Doncaster when stepped up to Group 2 level. He could only finish third on his latest start in Group 3 company when sent to France, but the vibes from the stable are looking good ahead of his stiffest test to date. He’s a likeable sort and further improvement is likely to come so he offers juicy value considering he’s rated the exact same as favourite Pierre Lapin, yet he’s double that ones odds in the market.
Selections: PIERRE LAPIN, GOLDEN HORDE, ROYAL CRUSADE
16.10 – Queen’s Vase – 1m6f
Although yet to go beyond 1m, I find it fascinating that Charlie Appleby pitches AL DABARAN over the 1m6f trip. He won his first two races nicely before placing twice in Group 3 company. I think this years renewal of the Queen’s Vase isn’t that strong and the son of Dubawi has strong form to his name compared to a few of these who will need improvement. You could argue that the trip would be a slight concern, but connections clearly feel he will be suited to the test, if he does stay, then surely Al Dabaran will be thereabouts at the finish being the top-rated runner in the line up.
The Aidan O’Brien yard have won this six times previously and SANTIAGO looks like he will appreciate this stiff test of stamina. He subsequently chased home a Group 2 winner before finally getting off the mark last time out. Ryan Moore has chosen to ride him, and he should go well in a race that has been dominated by the Ballydoyle brigade.
Selections: AL DABARAN, SANTIAGO
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