Enable, Crystal Ocean clash in King George VI and Queen Elizabeth

Enable winning the Breeders' Cup Turf (gr. I) - Coady Photography It’s a showdown of top-class caliber at one of the world’s oldest Thoroughbred racetracks. It’s one of the most prestigious races in all of Europe. It’s the King George VI and Queen Elizabeth Stakes (G1), scheduled to be held for the 69th time Saturday at Ascot Racecourse in England. Every year the King George VI and Queen Elizabeth Stakes (a "Win and You're In" qualifier for the [...]

Royal Ascot spot plays: Sands of Mali in the Diamond Jubilee

Royal Procession. Queen Elizabeth the Second arriving at Royal Ascot - Photo by Horsephotos.com It’s been a fun run, but the five-day Royal Ascot meet wraps up Saturday with one last stakes-filled card, highlighted by the Diamond Jubilee Stakes (G1). To celebrate the final day of racing, let’s examine the three group races on the agenda and try to end the meet on a winning note. Race 2: Jersey Stakes (G3) #13 Space Blues has yet to compete [...]

Royal Ascot: Spot plays for Day 4

Racing at Royal Ascot - Photo by Horsephotos.com The penultimate day of racing at the 2019 Royal Ascot meet features four more group stakes races, including a high-quality renewal of the Coronation Stakes (G1). Favorites have struggled during the first three days of the meet, perhaps in part because of the soft ground, but with the course drying out, the action might be a bit more predictable Friday. Let’s dig in and come up with a few spot [...]

Royal Ascot: Spot plays for Gold Cup day

Horses and jockeys during the 2017 Queen Mary Stakes at Royal Ascot - Photo by Horsephotos.com The highlight of the racing action on Day 3 of the 2019 Royal Ascot meeting is the Gold Cup (G1), a 2 1/2-mile test of stamina that ranks among my favorite races anywhere in the world. I’m also intrigued by the much shorter Norfolk Stakes (G2) for 2-year-olds, so let’s come up with a few plays for these two competitive events. Race [...]

Royal Ascot spot plays for a magical day of racing Wednesday

Magical (purple cap) battles with Enable (pink cap) in the 2018 Breeders' Cup Turf (G1) - © Casey Phillips/Eclipse Sportswire/CSM /Breeders Cup The second day of racing at Royal Ascot brings the Prince of Wales’s Stakes (G1), arguably the most anticipated race of the meet, thanks to its high-quality international field. Three other group stakes races support the Prince of Wales’s, with the Duke of Cambridge Stakes (G2) for fillies and mares my main interest from a handicapping [...]

Royal Ascot: Three spot plays for opening day

Imprimis winning the Shakertown Stakes (G2) at Keeneland - Keeneland Photo On Tuesday racing fans around the globe will turn their attention to Ascot Racecourse in England, where the five-day Royal Ascot race meet will take place June 18-22. The prestigious and much-anticipated meet will feature high-class horses from around the world in 30 races, including 19 group stakes. The opening-day card is particularly deep, with three group 1 races on the agenda. Want to get in on [...]

Cracksman, Roaring Lion Among Stars on British Champions Day

Royal Ascot - Photo by Horsephotos.com The 2018 racing season in Great Britain will reach its climax this Saturday with the eighth-annual British Champions Day at Ascot, a top-class afternoon of racing featuring five prestigious stakes races across a variety of distances and divisions. The day could be especially memorable for trainer John Gosden, who conditions the favorite in four of the five races. Here’s a quick rundown of what to watch for on Saturday…. Race 1: QIPCO [...]

Poet’s Word Rallies to Victory in King George VI & Queen Elizabeth Stakes

By winning the King George, Poet's Word has earned a "Win and You're In" berth to the 2018 Breeders' Cup Turf at Churchill Downs. Photo by © Breeders' Cup/Jamie Rhodes 2011 Gallant? Determined? Unwavering? Pick any similar adjective and you’ll have a word that roughly describes the relentless late rally turned in by Poet’s Word to win the King George VI & Queen Elizabeth Stakes (Eng-I) on Saturday at Ascot Racecourse in England. Even knowing the outcome, it [...]

Cracksman Seeks Redemption in King George VI & Queen Elizabeth Stakes

The talented Cracksman is looking to bounce back from a surprising defeat at Royal Ascot last month - Photo by Horsephotos.com Isn’t it funny how fast things can change in the sport of horse racing? Barely more than a month ago, Cracksman was the toast of Europe’s racing scene, a three-time Group 1 winner viewed as a budding superstar and a nearly unbeatable force for trainer John Gosden. Now, he’s just the third choice in an eight-horse field [...]

Weather a key factor on British Champions Day

It hasn’t taken long for British Champions Day, held at Ascot Oct. 21, to become one of the best racedays in the world. Founded in 2011 by combining two Ascot feature races and three from Newmarket, it has once again drawn outstanding fields. However, punters this year will need to keep a close eye on the weather. Rain is predicted, which would change the likely outcomes of many of the races. The card begins with the two-mile British Champions Long [...]