The TWE Vault - 2018 King George VI

The TWE Vault is a new blog that will run weekly, where we will be looking back on previous race footage that was truly breath-taking at the time that you may have forgot about.

The beauty of this blog is that it revisits those incredible rides and performances from yesteryear, whilst giving you readers at home potentially the chance to see a specific race for the first time.

Each week we will try and link the race we will be showing to one that is up and coming during that week and we continue with the more recent renewals, by casting our minds back to the 2018 King George VI & Queen Elizabeth II Stakes.

The 2019 edition takes place this weekend at the royal venue at Ascot, and if it is anything like last year's, we are in for a treat.

That being said, we could be looking at one of the best races of our generation in a few days time, with Enable and Crystal Ocean locking horns with a bunch of international raiders and British and Irish three-year-old's.

However, that is all to come and we are here to reflect on last summer's events in the mid-summer highlight at the Berkshire track, which was fought out by two Sir Michael Stoute flagbearers.

Crystal Ocean - who goes again in this year's renewal, was part of a red-hot double act for the 73-year-old veteran, joined with the Saeed Suhail-owned Poet's Word.

Poet's Word arrived into the race after convincing victories in both the Brigadier Gerard Stakes and the Prince Of Wales's Stakes, and was vying for favouritism in the lead-up to the event with the son of Sea The Stars, who was a perfect three out of three after winning the Hardwicke Stakes.

The race looked set to be staged between these two, and that was certainly the case after the bend for home, despite the field featuring a future French Group One winner in Coronet, the trustworthy Salouen, and Fillies & Mares winner Hydrangea.

Crystal Ocean was the first to commit under William Buick, but failed to stay the distance after the launching challenge of Poet's Word down the wide outside.

James Doyle along with Buick - both known for their commitments with Godolphin, were at war on two outstanding colts in different colours, and it was Poet's Word who came off the better.

Ironically, the Doyler will be aboard the five-year-old [CO] this time around, after Ryan Moore stays faithful to Ballydoyle to ride Derby winner Anthony Van Dyck, whilst Frankie Dettori will get the leg-up on star mare Enable.

Despite being the best rated horse in the world at the moment, no jockey seems to be long attached to Crystal Ocean, so this will be an excellent opportunity for James Doyle to showcase his talents - not that he needs to.

The Doyler could use a small boost after the sad news of Sea Of Class this week, whereas the horse needs to prove he can stay 1m4f in a Group One.

As mentioned, this year's contest could be one of the greatest races ever, but last year's will certainly live long in the memory with the battle of the two Sir Michael Stoute stablestars.

What a race, and you can relive it below: