5 Proven Royal Ascot Performers

Stradivarius wins the Gold Cup

Some of the most competitive racing of the year to tackle happens this week with our Royal Ascot tips. Because of the prize money on offer and the prestige of the meeting, small fields are few and far between. Some horses handle the occasion better than others and a number of last seasons contenders will be back in search of more glory in 2019.

Accidental Agent – Queen Anne Stakes

A somewhat surprise winner of the opening race of the 2018 Royal Meeting, Accidental Agent’s 33/1 Queen Anne victory was an emotional one. Eve Johnson Houghton’s runner is bred and owned by her mother, making it a truly memorable day for the family.

Accidental Agent came into the race last season following a sixth in the Lockinge Stakes, but bettered that this time around with a third in the Newbury Group 1. Running on from the back of the field, shaping as though he’ll benefit from the run and be in peak fitness ahead of his Queen Anne defence.

Blue Point – King’s Stand Stakes

Always held in high regard since his juvenile days, Blue Point has appeared in all the top races for Charlie Appleby, but didn’t get his first Group 1 win until the King’s Stand Stakes in 2018 at his beloved Ascot. Three wins from four at the venue, his only defeat came in the 2017 Commonwealth Cup behind Caravaggio and Harry Angel.

Seemingly returning to the track better than ever in 2019, Blue Point notched up three wins on the bounce in Meydan, including the Group 1 Al Quoz Sprint. Described by his trainer as “the finished article”, a defence of his King’s Stand title has been on the agenda for some time and it’d be surprising were he not to run well again.

Stradivarius – Gold Cup

Imperious in the staying division last season, Stradivarius was a game winner of the Gold Cup ahead of Vazirabad and Torcedor. He was the unexposed, up and comer in 2018, but will have to hold off similar types this time around.

The likes of Melbourne Cup hero Cross Counter and Derby runner up Dee Ex Bee will be throwing everything they have at Stradivarius in a bid to dethrone the reigning champion. Given the class, stamina and natural ability of John Gosden’s star though, it’ll be far from easy for the challengers.

Crystal Ocean – Hardwicke/Prince Of Wales’s Stakes

Sir Michael Stoute has an enviable record at Royal Ascot, being the winning-most trainer at the meeting with 79 winners. A staggering eleven of those wins have come in the Hardwicke Stakes, most recently with Crystal Ocean in 2018.

The consistent son of Sea The Stars cruised to a straightforward two and a half length victory, by far the best horse in a race. He has the option of the Group 2 Hardwicke Stakes once again or the Group 1 Prince Of Wales’s Stakes, but given the manner of his two wins so far this season, a bold bid is expected wherever he runs.

Prince Of Wales’s Stakes –

Hardwicke Stakes –

City Light – Diamond Jubilee Stakes

Overseas raiders have fared well in the Diamond Jubilee Stakes in recent years, with Australian superstar Black Caviar winning in 2012 and the American horse Undrafted emerging victorious in 2015.

Stephane Wattel’s French challenger City Light was arguably unlucky not to win the 2018 renewal having been awkward and slow leaving the stalls to only go down a neck to Merchant Navy at the line, and being ahead a stride later. A repeat of that effort would surely see another bold show, especially if leaving the stalls on terms.

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