Royal Ascot 2022 Arrives

Date: 15 Jun 2022

Royal Ascot 2022 Arrives reports:


Harry Allwood reveals his five to follow at Royal Ascot this week, with a contender chalked up at 28-1 in the Royal Hunt Cup his strongest fancy in the handicaps.


Baaeed - seven from seven and the star of the show in the opening contest at Royal Ascot on Tuesday (Pic: Focusonracing)
Baaeed - seven from seven and the star of the show in the opening contest at Royal Ascot on Tuesday (Pic: Focusonracing) 

There is some mouth-watering action to look forward to at Royal Ascot this week with the abundance of international raiders adding extra spice.

The five-day fixture could hardly get off to a better start with Baaeed, arguably the best horse in the world, putting his unbeaten record on the line in the Queen Anne Stakes.

At odds of 1-5, he's one to enjoy watching and hopefully he produces a performance that sets the pulse racing.

It has been an extremely successful season already for David Loughnane and Amo Racing, who have a hugely exciting bunch of youngsters to unleash this week, and I fancy a couple of them to claim top honours.



Race: Coventry Stakes (Wednesday morning NZ time)


Persian Force made it two from two in style at Newbury

It is hard to ignore the fact Richard Hannon has said Persian Force is one of the best two-year-olds he has had for a long time and the leading trainer believes his exciting youngster compares favourably to former stable star Canford Cliffs, who bolted up in the 2009 Coventry Stakes.

That praise has been backed up on track, too, as Persian Force has created a huge impression on his first two starts having clocked some strong sectionals on debut in the Brocklesby, the form of which has worked out well, before easing clear of a smart prospect, who beat two subsequent winners on debut, at Newbury last time out.

He was also strong at the finish on both occasions, so the stiff finish at Ascot should not pose a problem, and his sire, Mehmas, won the same race at Newbury en route to finishing second behind Caravaggio in the 2016 Coventry.

Given this looks a strong renewal of the Group Two contest on paper, the selection may be a shade short now at a general 3-1, but he's still the one to side with and I believe he's a Group One performer in the making.


Race: Queen Mary Stakes - (Thursday morning NZ time)

This filly is held in extremely high regard by her handler and attracted plenty of support in the market before storming clear of her rivals on debut over five furlongs at Newmarket, despite showing signs of greenness.

As Angus McNae explained in The Verdict, Dramatised set a strong pace on that occasion but still produced a sharp turn of foot to clock some impressive sectionals in the latter part of the race, and her rider appeared to struggle pulling her up.

The daughter of Showcasing can only improve for that experience and the runner-up won her next two starts, so the form looks useful.

It's hard to know how good American raider Love Reigns is, but Karl Burke has a useful bunch of youngsters in his care this season, and Dramatised looks the best of them.


Race: Royal Hunt Cup - (Thursday morning NZ time)

Bopedro was an unlucky loser when he last raced off a rating of 103 in a handicap

Bopedro looked a potential Group performer in the making when bolting up in the Irish Cambridgeshire off a rating of 94 last season and was unlucky not to score on his next start off a 9lb higher mark when a fast-finishing third in a valuable 7f handicap at Leopardstown as he was forced wide and left with plenty to do.

It was a shade disappointing Jessica Harrington's charge could only manage sixth at Listed level on his final start in 2021, but that was at the end of a long season, and it was no surprise he was not seen again afterwards.

Although he has failed to land a blow on his first two outings this year, I expect they have been pipe openers for this contest, and he now finds himself back on a rating of 103.

He's already proved he is capable of going close off this mark and stall three shouldn't inconvenience this hold-up performer, either, as there are a few drawn near him who like to get on with things.

Providing he doesn't meet traffic problems, he has every chance of being in the mix here and is my best bet in the handicaps this week at 28-1.


Race: Norfolk Stakes - (Friday morning NZ time)


Rossa Ryan provides the inside track on Walbank and Persian Force ahead of Royal Ascot


David Loughnane is another trainer who has some smart youngsters this season and Walbank found only Noble Style, who was a strong fancy for the Coventry Stakes before being ruled out, too good on debut in a novice stakes at Ascot.

The third and fourth in that contest both scored in good style on their next starts, so the form looks useful, and while Walbank didn't have to improve to score at York on his next outing, he travelled strongly and powered clear of his rivals in eye-catching style.

Loughnane was full of praise for Walbank after his York victory.

“He's an absolute bullet,” Loughnane said when discussing his 525,000gns breeze-up purchase who also clocked a decent time at York and won with plenty in hand.

He has the benefit of course experience, the ground conditions will be ideal, and he's also attracted some support this week, so there's lots to like about his chances.


Race: Albany Stakes - (Saturday morning NZ time)

Queen Olly - hugely impressive on debut at York - Loughnane could not hide his excitement following Queen Olly's impressive debut victory at York in May and was quick to mention Royal Ascot as her target afterwards.

Although his No Nay Never filly didn't record an exceptional time on the Knavesmire, she travelled by far the best filly in the race and ran green once she hit the front, so it is wise to think she will have taken a big step forward for that effort.

"It'll take something decent to beat her...I think she's very good." - Loughnane on Queen Olly

Loughnane also believes Queen Olly is the best of his exciting bunch of two-year-olds, and the stiff finish is likely to suit as she will stay further than six furlongs, based upon her pedigree.

She will face some other potential stars in the Albany, but on the impression she created on debut and the strong vibes from her trainer, she's worth siding with each-way at 8-1.


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