Royal Ascot - Day 5 Preview

Date: 25 Jun 2023

Royal Ascot - Day 5 Preview

Saturday - and it's the final day of the 2023 Royal Ascot carnival - here are the highlights:


  • Frankie Dettori will sign off his Royal Ascot career with five rides

  • Knockbrex will be his final ride at the Royal Meeting in the Golden Gates Stakes

  • The Group 1 Queen Elizabeth II Jubilee Stakes is the feature race with horses from four continents taking each other on

  • King's Lynn runs for Their Majesties The King and Queen in the Wokingham Stakes

  • Ryan Moore heads the jockey standings with five winners in the week so far

  • John & Thady Gosden are the leading trainers before the final day with four winners


The final day of Royal Ascot is another spectacular card with intrigue and excitement guaranteed throughout. As well as seven races to be decided, the leading Jockey and Trainer standings need to be sorted out and there is the small matter of a final farewell to Frankie Dettori at Royal Ascot.

Note there is an 11 hour time difference with New Zealand.

An unusually large field of 17 will head to post for the opening Chesham Stakes (2.30pm), a Listed contest for two-year-olds over seven furlongs. Aidan O'Brien has won four of the last seven renewals so his runners are always respected and this year he saddles Pearls And Rubies and Content who are both well fancied. Ryan Moore opts for Pearls And Rubies after his Navan success earlier this month and if the quick turnaround isn't an issue he should go close. The appropriately named Warnie will be ridden by Australian-based rider James McDonald and might run well having been a breeze-up purchase for all he is making his debut. Fellow Irish raider Snellen is interesting for Gavin Cromwell having won on debut at Limerick.

The Jersey Stakes (3.05pm) is normally one of the most competitive Group 3 races in the calendar with horses often running here having competed in either the British or Irish 2,000 Guineas. Several follow that trend today, including Quar Shamar who was sixth in the Irish version at the Curragh and could run well. Holloway Boy won over this course and distance at the Royal Meeting last year and should improve for his reappearance in the Newmarket 2,000 Guineas so he is in the mix along with Olivia Maralda who was a Listed winner at Epsom recently. Covey and Enfjaar arrive completely unexposed having come through the novice ranks and really could be anything.

Saturday's feature is the Queen Elizabeth II Jubilee Stakes (3.40pm), a Group 1 sprint over six furlongs, renamed this year to remember and celebrate The late Queen and her irreplaceable association with Royal Ascot. It is worth a £1 million in prize money and has collected a genuinely international field with horses travelling from five countries and across four continents to compete. The home challenge is led by Highfield Princess, second in the King's Stand Stakes on Tuesday and bidding to go one better here. Kinross was a Group 1 winner of this course and distance on QIPCO British Champions Day and can run well while the likes of Sacred, Rohaan and Art Power also have the ability to be competitive.

The Australian sprinter Artorius looks to have a golden chance of improving on his third in the race last year though. He has enjoyed an excellent season back home including top level success in the Canterbury Stakes in March and arrives here in top order. Cannonball and The Astrologist also represent Australia while Hong Kong contender Wellington is one of the best horses in training there and should be very strong at the finish as a seven-furlong Group 1 winner. Big Invasion represents top sprint form from America and Coeur De Pierre is a French Group 3 winner. It should be a fantastic spectacle.

A fabulous looking Hardwicke Stakes (4.20pm) could give Dettori a send off winner as he partners Free Wind who is seeking a fifth consecutive victory. They are spread across three seasons but she remains unexposed and beat Rogue Millenium last time at York who boosted that form here on Wednesday when winning the Duke of Cambridge Stakes. Hukum was seemingly better than ever when winning the Brigadier Gerard Stakes at Sandown and this trip will suit him better while if Pyledriver is anywhere near the form of his King George win last summer he will also go close.

It is probably too much to hope that King's Lynn can be a second Royal winner of the week in the Wokingham Stakes (5.00pm) but he can run well for Their Majesties The King and The Queen. Flaming Rib carries top weight but has good form here and should put up a good showing while Lethal Levi arrives in fine form having been second at York and might still have more to come. The pick looks to be Orazio though. He was so impressive over this course and distance in May and remains extremely progressive so with the champion jockey William Buick booked he can take this historic sprint handicap.

Knockbrex will be a hugely popular selection as Dettori's final Royal Ascot ride in the Golden Gates Stakes (5.35pm) and he certainly has the right profile to pull off the fairytale farewell having run well over two furlongs further at York before fading to fourth. Prior to that he was just behind Gregory at Haydock who took the Queen's Vase here on Wednesday so his form is hot and the jockey booking is obviously attractive. Local Dynasty was placed at Listed level at Chester and can also run well along with Coco Jack at a bigger price who has improved for every step up in trip and can do so again following his Musselburgh second behind Lion Of War.

As is tradition, the Royal Meeting comes to a conclusion with the Queen Alexandra Stakes (6.10pm). It is the longest race run anywhere under Flat racing rules at two-and-a-quarter miles and as such it is always attractive to Jumps trainers. Stratum has won the last two renewals for Willie Mullins and can clearly run well again but Dawn Rising might just have his measure. He has some classy back form on the Flat and was a Grade 3 winner over hurdles last November. With Ryan Moore booked he can be expected to run extremely well for Joesph O'Brien who had a winner on Friday and is in excellent form.

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