Friday 18th June 2021
Welcome to what will be the final blog of this year’s Royal Ascot, in this preview I’ll be taking a look at the remaining three Group 1s that take place over the last two days of the meeting. The first of these comes at 3:40 on Friday in the form of the Commonwealth Cup, which is contested over six furlongs. The Wesley Ward trained Campanelle sets a high standard here, she won the Queen Mary last year before also claiming the Group 1 Prix Morny and now reunited with Dettori once again she could prove tough to beat. I actually like the French raider Suesa here, who boasts an unbeaten record. The daughter of Night Of Thunder looks quite exciting and arrives here off the back of two comfortable Group 3 victories, that form also came on soft ground so the predicted rain won’t be an issue for her at all. Dragon Symbol and Supremacy are possibly the strongest of the home challenge.
We also have the Coronation Stakes on Friday, which is a Group 1 event over a mile. 1000 Guineas winner Mother Earth takes her place at the top of the market for Ryan Moore and Aidan O’Brien, and rightfully so, with Ballydoyle also responsible for the current second favourite Empress Josephine who won the Irish equivalent. There’s a whole host of top performers taking their place here, Alcohol Free, Shale and Fev Rover to name but a few. It’s one of the less exposed or proven ones I’m taking a side with here and that’s Snow Lantern for Richard Hannon and Sean Levey. The three-year-old daughter of Frankel looked mightily impressive when winning a maiden at Newbury before finishing third within listed company at York. It’s said that she had a few issues that day though, and if back fully on song here I think she still retains a lot of potential.
The concluding Group 1 of the meeting is the Diamond Jubilee Stakes over six furlongs on Saturday. Starman will be a warm order here following his impressive win last time out in the Group 2 Duke Of York Stakes at the Dante Festival. It’s the horse who was narrowly denied by a head in this race last year that my allegiance will be going too, and that’s the Sir Michael Stoute Dream Of Dreams who’s set to be ridden by Ryan Moore. Since his close-up defeat in this race last year he’s gone on to win the Group 2 Hungerford Stakes by a wide margin at Newbury and then followed up with Group 1 success at Haydock in the Sprint Cup. He made his reappearance at Windsor last month when winning a Listed contest at short odds and that should’ve sharpened him up for a crack at redemption here.