ITV Racing Ascot Champions Day Preview

Ascot - October 16 2020
Ascot 12:20
7(1)
Frankie Dettori

Stradivarius

J:
 
Frankie Dettori
T:
 
John Gosden
Age: 6
Weight: 9-7
OR: 125
Days: 13

The first race of the day is the Group Two Long Distance Cup and although it is a boring selection we just cant see the favourite Stradivarius getting beat.

The six year old has been the poster boy for the UK staying division for the last three seasons landing 10 races in a row including winning a Weatherbys-sponsored £1million bonus in the last two seasons after landing the Yorkshire Cup, Ascot Gold Cup, Goodwood Cup and Lonsdale Cup at York.

As mentioned, Stradivarius lost his unbeaten record that stretched back to May 2018, when being pipped in a photo finish on Champions Day last year in the Long Distance Cup.

He came back this season and had a prep run in the Group One Coronation Cup where he ran to a good standard finishing third and gave him the run he needed to go and win his third Ascot Gold Cup.

After joining the likes of Double Trigger and Yeats after landing the Gold Cup, he headed to Glorious Goodwood seeking a fourth win in the Goodwood Cup, which he went on to win.

His owner/breeder Bjorn Nielsen always wanted a crack at the Arc and in preparation sent him to Longchamp over the course and distance in the Prix Foy, where he was a narrow second to Derby winner Anthony Van Dyck.

He then headed into the Longchamp feature and in a slowly ran renewal could only finish seventh with the way the race unfolded not playing to his strengths and going back to a staying trip on Saturday should see him back to his best.

DateCourseDistanceTypeWeightPosition
13/05/22YOR14Gd9-61
16/10/21ASC16GS9-73
02/10/21LON20VSft9-22
10/09/21DON18GF9-81
20/08/21YOR16.5GF9-31
Ascot - October 16 2020
Ascot 12:55
14(11)
Pierre-Charles Boudot

One Master

J:
 
Pierre-Charles Boudot
T:
 
William Haggas
Age: 6
Weight: 8-13
OR: 114
Days: 13

The first Group One race of the day sees the Champion Sprint Stakes over six furlongs and this race, especially on heavy ground this season is a nightmare for punters.

We are hoping to change that opinion on the race with our selection with the William Haggas trained super-mare One Master in superb form and looking one of the more likely contenders.

The six year old has been a shining light for the yard over the last few years and after heading back to Lonchamp two weeks back and getting the job done in the Group One Prix de la Foret over seven furlongs for a third straight time.

The mare finished a one-length second to Donjuan Triumphant in heavy ground in this race last season and with heavy ground conditions showing up again she has a live chance once more.

The six year old has been in consistent form all season only being narrowly beat on her starts that she has not won and having proved herself in this race before she looks an attractive bet at the prices.

DateCourseDistanceTypeWeightPosition
17/10/20ASC6Sft8-133
04/10/20LON7Hy8-131
12/09/20DON7Gd9-12
22/08/20YOR7GS9-32
31/07/20GOO7GF9-31
Ascot - October 16 2020
Ascot 13:30
2(4)
Hollie Doyle

Dame Malliot

J:
 
Hollie Doyle
T:
 
Ed Vaughan
Age: 4
Weight: 9-5
OR: 114
Days: 34

The Group One Champion Fillies & Mares Stakes over 1 mile 4 furlongs sees horses that may not have really cut it at the top level all that often, which makes for a weaker renewal of the contest.

The filly that takes the eye is the Ed Vaughan trained Dame Malliot as it would be a great story if this horse was to win with the trainer quitting the sport at the end of the season.

Hollie Doyle also gets the ride having landed the Group Two Princess of Wales’s Stakes at Newmarket in soft conditions on her, which was the riders first ever win in black type company.

Dame Malliot has been twice since that win finishing third in the Group One Preis Von Europa in Germany and last time out when third behind Tarnawa in the Group One Prix Vermeille at Longchamp.

That form has since been franked with Tarnawa going on to win on Arc day in the Prix de l'Opera and second Raabihah a staying on fifth in the Arc.

DateCourseDistanceTypeWeightPosition
13/09/20LON12Gd9-53
15/08/20COL12Sft9-33
09/07/20NMK12Sft9-31
12/09/19DON14.5GF8-126
18/08/19DEA12.5Hy8-91
Ascot - October 16 2020
Ascot 14:05
12(5)
Frankie Dettori

Palace Pier

J:
 
Frankie Dettori
T:
 
John Gosden
Age: 3
Weight: 9-1
OR: 126
Days: 62

Getting towards the best races on the card and the Queen Elizabeth II Stakes over a mile has always been a highlight of the meeting.

we can't look past the unbeaten favourite Palace Pier as 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.

The ground will be heavy for the Group One meeting on Saturday and having previously proved he will go on the surface, he looks tough to beat.

DateCourseDistanceTypeWeightPosition
15/08/21DEA8Gd9-51
15/06/21ASC8GF9-01
15/05/21NBY8GS9-01
23/04/21SAN8Gd9-11
17/10/20ASC8Sft9-13
Ascot - October 16 2020
Ascot 14:40
9(9)
Frankie Dettori

Mishriff

J:
 
Frankie Dettori
T:
 
John Gosden
Age: 3
Weight: 9-1
OR: 121
Days: 63

The feature race on the classy card is the Group One British Champion Stakes where a superb field of 14 head to post looking to follow in some superb footsteps.

John Gosden has a very good record in this race landing two of the last three renewals we fancy him to land the contest this year with Mishriff.

The three year old has exceeded expectations this term being unbeaten on all three of his starts to date, starting in the Listed Newmarket Stakes where he saw off his highly touted stablemate Waldkonig.

He then stepped up to the French Derby at Chantilly and he landed the event in fine style, pulling away from a talented field to take the first Group One of his career.

Gosden went with the approach that if its not broke, don't fix it and he sent him back to France for the Group Two Prix Guillaume daEUR and although only a small field took to post he landed the spoils nicely.

Having swerved the Arc the colt is in flying form and should be fresh for this event with the heavy ground playing to his strengths having already won on the surface this season.

DateCourseDistanceTypeWeightPosition
26/02/22JAN9Fs9-014
16/10/21ASC10GS9-54
18/08/21YOR10.5Gd9-61
24/07/21ASC12GF9-72
03/07/21SAN10GS9-73
Ascot - October 16 2020
Ascot 15:15
13(22)
James Doyle

King Ottokar

J:
 
James Doyle
T:
 
Charlie Fellowes
Age: 4
Weight: 9-3
OR: 100
Days: 35

The final race of the day and of the official flat season at Ascot is the big fielded Balmoral Handicap over a mile and with so many runners we have two selections.

The first selection is the Charlie Fellowes trained King Ottokar who since finishing third in the Hampton Court Stakes at Royal Ascot last season has not been able to replicate that form in handicaps.

However, now on a mark of 100 which is his lowest for some time he should be able to outrun his odds at a track he has performed well at in the past.

He was entered into a decent handicap at Ascot at the start of October when the meeting was postponed and although not racing was backed from 16/1 into 7/1.

That makes us feel this horse is primed to go close in an event like this and getting his soft conditions can only help.

DateCourseDistanceTypeWeightPosition
12/02/22NBY16.5GS11-28
11/09/21CHS10.5GS8-116
24/08/21NBY8Gd9-117
15/05/21NBY8GS9-53
27/03/21DON8Gd9-415
Ascot - October 16 2020
Ascot 15:15
7(9)
Oisin Murphy

Bell Rock

J:
 
Oisin Murphy
T:
 
Andrew Balding
Age: 4
Weight: 9-6
OR: 103
Days: 21

At a bigger price, but arguably at bigger odds than what he should be is the Andrew Balding trained Bell Rock who has some stand out form heading into the race.

The four year old has been seen four times this term, winning over a mile on seasonal debut at Newmarket and then being put into the 23 runner Royal Hunt Cup at Royal Ascot and finishing a fair sixth.

Since then the gelding was stepped up in trip to 10 and 9 furlongs finishing third on both occasions at Glorious Goodwood and at Newmarket last time out in the Cambridgeshire handicap.

He goes off the same mark as that third last time out and off that run he has big place potential, the only query will be will he handle the wettest ground he will have run on during his career.

DateCourseDistanceTypeWeightPosition
10/06/22YOR8Gd9-93
09/05/22WDR8GF9-73
12/04/22NMK9Gd9-04
25/09/21NMK9GF9-718
04/09/21HAY8GF9-32

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