Ascot Saturday Preview - 23/07/22

James Mackie | @jamesmackieee

Ascot - July 22 2022
Ascot 12:50
Frankie Dettori


J: Frankie Dettori
T: Ralph Beckett
Age: 2
Weight: 9-2
OR: 101
Days: 15

The first race of the afternoon is the Group Three Princess Margaret Keeneland Stakes over six furlongs and we can't look past the favourite Lezoo.

A strong favourite at the top of the market the Ralph Beckett trained two year old has been seen three times to date, winning her first two events at Bath and then at Newmarket when upped to six furlongs in the Listed Empress Fillies Stakes.

Last time out she narrowly lost her unbeaten record over the same course and distance when just going down to the talented Mawj, but there was trouble in running but unfortunately the placings weren't reversed.

Offers by far the best form in this race and although stepping up into a Group Three she is very progressive.One of the best bets of the day.

Ascot - July 22 2022
Ascot 13:25
Andrea Atzeni

Kind Gesture

J: Andrea Atzeni
T: Roger Varian
Age: 3
Weight: 8-11
OR: 92
Days: 27

The Group Three Valiant Stakes over a mile looks a nice event at Ascot on Saturday afternoon and we are playing one against the field for Roger Varian.

Kind Gesture for owner Prince Faisal looks to be a very smart filly in the making, being seen three times to date and just going from strength to strength.

Finishing second on debut at Nottingham over 8.5f, she has since been seen twice, getting off the mark next time out at Wetherby and then last time out put up a career best performance over a mile at Windsor when bolting up by 10 lengths.

She is currently a double figure price which we think makes her overpriced and although stepping up massively in grade she just looks a potentially special horse that should just keep improving.

Roger Varian and jockey Andrea Atzeni are currently both running at a 30% strike rate for the last 14 days.

Ascot - July 22 2022
Ascot 14:00
Rossa Ryan

Air To Air

J: Rossa Ryan
T: George Boughey
Age: 4
Weight: 8-11
OR: 95
Days: 29

One of the trickiest events from the Berkshire track on the weekend is the Class 2 Moet & Chandon International Stakes over 7f and with a huge field going to post we have dutched the race.

The first horse we are putting up is Air To Air for Classic winning trainer George Boughey with the money for this horse coming all week being 25/1 at the ante-post stage and is now around 8/1.

A horse that has matured with age and on his sole start this term at Yarmouth showed that he had progressed from his three year old campaign when winning a Nursery Handicap comfortably.

Seven furlongs seems to be his trip and with Rossa Ryan booked he holds every chance off a mark 95, which is only 4lb higher than his last run.

When the money comes for a Boughey horse they very rarely get it wrong.

Ascot - July 22 2022
Ascot 14:00
Colin Keane


J: Colin Keane
T: Charlie Fellowes
Age: 9
Weight: 8-12
OR: 96
Days: 37

At a much bigger price is the Charlie Fellowes trained Chiefofchiefs who does not know how to run a bad race around Ascot.

A frequent runner at the track over 6/7f in big fielded events he always seems to hit the frame and back in June 2020 went on to land the Silver Wokingham Handicap at the Royal meeting off a mark of 95.

Running crackers last season in similar events at the track with a strong fourth in the Wokingham Stakes and a close up seventh in the Victoria Cup, he has been in similar form this term.

Giving his best run of the year when last seen at the royal meeting he finished a narrow fourth of 29 in the Buckingham Palace Stakes over course and distance and off the same mark can't be ruled out hitting the frame again at an each way price.

Ascot - July 22 2022
Ascot 14:35
Frankie Dettori

Emily Upjohn

J: Frankie Dettori
T: John & Thady Gosden
Age: 3
Weight: 8-9
OR: 117
Days: 50

The feature race of the afternoon in the UK is the Group One King George VI & Queen Elizabeth Stakes and a strong field of six heads to post.

We are siding with the John & Thady Gosden trained Emily Upjohn who is getting weight off the entire field and has the potential of being a superstar filly.

Making her first start last year at Wolves over 9.5f she saw off a nice challenger for Godolphin in Secret Image, who then went onto frank the form.

Put away for this season, Emily Upjohn made her sole start this term at Sandown over 1m2f and in one of the most impressive performances in the division this season, she went on to win by close to 10 lengths under a penalty.

Stepping up into black type company for the first time in her career last time out she went to York for the Group Three Musidora Stakes and made it a hat-trick of wins, when dominating a good field by close to six lengths.

It was all systems go for the Epsom Oaks and going off the strong favourite many expected her to get the job done, however having lost ground at the start not coming out the stalls well, she did extremely to battle back to get close to winner Tuesday, only going down in a photo finish.

Set to run in the Irish Oaks last week but having travel problems she has now been rerouted here and being fresher than the favourite Westover and also getting 3lb off him, she looks the value.

Ascot - July 22 2022
Ascot 15:10
William Buick

Naval Power

J: William Buick
T: Charlie Appleby
Age: 2
Weight: 9-5
OR: 92
Days: 30

Another nice event on the Ascot card is the Listed Pat Eddery Stakes over seven furlongs and Naval Power for Charlie Appleby could turn out to be the yard's star two year old.

Seen twice to date, the colt made a very smart debut when getting the better of Alzahir and stablemate One Nation at Yarmouth over seven furlongs, winning the same race as New Science did who turned out to be very good.

Under a penalty when last seen at Leicester he went on to score easily from Solture for Hugo Palmer, showing his improvement in a big way.

This is a tougher event but from what he has shown to date he is just progressing at a rate of knots.

Ascot - July 22 2022
Ascot 15:45
Benoit De La Sayette


J: Benoit De La Sayette
T: John & Thady Gosden
Age: 3
Weight: 9-8
OR: 105
Days: 37

The penultimate selection of the afternoon comes in the Class 2 Porsche Handicap over one mile and this looks a big opportunity for Saga to get off the mark.

One of the most unluckiest horses in training, as a juvenile the the colt finished second on his first two outings at Newmarket in Maiden and Novice company, finishing in behind Group one winner Modern Games on debut and then 2000 Guineas winner Coroebus next time out.

Getting off the mark over 7f at Ascot on his final run of last term, he saw off the talented Koy Koy, who has since gone on to perform well.

Back this season, he bumper into another superstar on seasonal debut, finishing second to German 2000 Guineas winner Maljoom in a Conditions Stakes.

A poor run on his penultimate start that can be put down to a bad day at the office, he bounced back to form in a huge way last time out when stepping up to a mile and finishing a head second to Thesis in the Britannia Stakes at the royal meeting.

Put up 8lb in the weights looks very harsh, but with Benoit De La Sayette employed for the ride he effectively only races off 3lb higher.

Ascot - July 22 2022
Ascot 16:20
Graham Lee

Bond Chairman

J: Graham Lee
T: Bryan Smart
Age: 3
Weight: 9-0
OR: 100
Days: 14

The final event of the afternoon from Ascot sees the Class 2 Garrard Handicap over 5f and Bond Chairman for Bryan Smart could have a little squeak.

A consistent performer at Ascot in big fielded events during his career, finishing fourth of 27 last season in the Listed Windsor Castle Stakes, he then on his first run this term was again fourth of 27 at Royal Ascot in the Palace Of Holyroodhouse Stakes.

Sent into the Betfred Heritage Handicap over course and distance again he was a head second to Mountain Peak and although up in the weights should run another bold race.