The Queen Elizabeth II Stakes over a mile on British Champions Dy could be the race of the season as 39 horses were entered on Tuesday and many of them will look to have a say in the proceedings.
The first named confirmed is the John Gosden trained Palace Pier and the son of Kingman has been faultless to date, winning both his starts as a juvenile, starting at Sandown back in August winning a nice maiden and then going on to back that up over the same course and distance.
He made his seasonal debut at Newcastle on the all weather seeing off a stern effort from the Richard Fahey trained Acquitted but off the back of that he improved a massive amount to hunt down Pinatubo late in the day at Royal Ascot in the St James’s Palace Stakes.
Having four wins from four races, he put his unbeaten run on the line in what was arguably his toughest event to date and in heavy ground cleared away from the field with the Jessica Harrington trained Alpine Star the closest to him.
(Credit ATR) Gosden said: “Palace Pier will go straight to Ascot for the Queen Elizabeth II Stakes. He took his race at Deauville well, and he’s been in good order since. I don’t think the ground there was ideal for him, but he coped with it.”
Another big name in the hat for the event is 2000 Guineas Kameko who is set to once gain refer back to his best trip of a mile, seeking for more Group One glory after disappointing performances when stepped up in trip.
Trainer Andrew Balding said: “Kameko will go straight to Ascot for the Queen Elizabeth II Stakes, and then I think the intention is to keep him in training next year.
“He didn’t get home behind Ghaiyyath in the Juddmonte International, but he looked very good again up to a point, and that was in probably the best race run in the world all year and on ground that was probably a little slower than ideal.”
Siskin could be looking to bounce back from losing his unbeaten record in the Sussex Stakes at Glorious Goodwood when third behind Mohaather and Circus Maximus.
His trainer Ger Lyons said:“He’s been in good order since he was third to the best older miler Mohaather in the Sussex Stakes at Goodwood, and he has options in the Prix de la Foret in France, the Boomerang on Irish Champions Day and of course the QEII.”
Another high profile trainer that could have a strong hand in the race is Charlie Appleby who has Pinatubo and Space Blues both possible entries in the contest.
Pinatubo is the more likely of the two as he will run in the Group One Prix Du Moulin and if winning that then head into the QEII.
Trainer Charlie Appleby said: “It will be Longchamp first, but we’ve only been touched off by Palace Pier in the St James’s Palace, so the QEII will be the obvious option if we decide that he’s seeing the mile out.”