There’s something for everyone in Saturday’s Diamond Jubilee Stakes (Eng-I) at Royal Ascot, and maybe—just maybe—there’s an opportunity for an American runner to secure a Group 1 victory.
As the final group stakes race of the Royal Ascot meet, the Diamond Jubilee offers one last chance for horsemen and bettors alike to make a big score, and the race figures to be a dash from start to finish as twelve fast horses sprint six furlongs down the straightway.
If you want to support one of the locally-based contenders, there are plenty to choose from, with the most obvious being #4 Harry Angel. After finishing second over this course and distance in the Commonwealth Cup (Eng-I) last summer, the Godolphin colt fired off back-to-back Group 1 wins in the Darley July Cup (Eng-I) and the Sprint Cup Stakes (Eng-I), utilizing his excellent early speed to dominate his rivals. He ended 2017 with a defeat, but kicked off 2018 with an easy win in the Duke of York Clipper Logistics Stakes (Eng-II) at York, a performance that has stamped him as the horse to beat in the Diamond Jubilee.
But if you want to take a shot with a horse based outside of Great Britain, why not consider #9 Redkirk Warrior? The seven-year-old gelding is a three-time Group 1 winner in Australia and has been in career-best form so far in 2018, battling his way to narrow victories in the Black Caviar Lightning Stakes (Aus-I) and the Lexus Newmarket Handicap (Aus-I) while showcasing the ability to win on the lead and while coming from off the pace. In terms of Racing Post Ratings, Redkirk Warrior’s best run puts him close to Harry Angel and at a nice price too; for good measure, he’ll be ridden by the top jockey Frankie Dettori.
However, my attention is drawn to #1 Bound for Nowhere, who ships in from the U.S. for trainer Wesley Ward, who won the 2015 Diamond Jubilee with Undrafted. The talented son of The Factor finished just 3 ½ lengths behind Harry Angel in the Commonwealth Cup last year, a noteworthy run considering that it was Bound for Nowhere’s first start over a straight course and just his third start overall.
Now four years old, Bound for Nowhere seems better than ever in 2018 and was last seen crushing a good field in the Shakertown Stakes (gr. II) over a soft course at Keeneland, winning by four lengths over Bucchero (who came back to finish a good fifth in the Group 1 King’s Stand at Royal Ascot a few days ago) and Disco Partner (next-out winner of the Grade 3 Jaipur Stakes at Belmont).
Bound for Nowhere will be a bit of a longshot in the Diamond Jubilee, but with the experience he gained in Europe last year, I think he can step up his game while returning to Royal Ascot and give Harry Angel and Redkirk Warrior a run for the money.
Let’s focus our attention on the trifecta, requiring at least two of the three favorites to finish in the money:
$2 trifecta: 1,4,9 with 1,4,9 with 1,4,9 ($12)
$1 trifecta: 1,4,9 with 1,4,9 with 6,7,12 ($18)