(subject to change) 7-4 Trueshan, 7-2 Stradivarius, 5 Search For A Song, 6 Baron Samedi, Hamish, 8 Manobo, 10 Princess Zoe, 12 Berkshire Rocco, 14 Fujaira Prince, The Mediterranean, 20 Bar.
Trueshan bolted up in this race in 2020 and the Alan King-trained stayer heads to Ascot in the form of his life having won back-to-back Group 1 races on his last two starts. However, he is a soft ground performer so isn’t a guaranteed runner if conditions dry out, while favourites don’t have a strong record in this. Last year’s runner-up Search For A Song would be a viable alternative were it not for the terrible record of fillies and mares in this race.
Stradivarius is an obvious player once again despite his age while Hamish shapes like this trip could unlock further improvement but BARON SAMEDI fits every trend and this Irish raider looks a big danger if taking his chance.
(subject to change) 4 Dragon Symbol, 5 Art Power, Rohaan, 11-2 Creative Force, 10 Minzaal, 12 Kinross, 16 Glen Shiel, Vadream, 18 Happy Romance, 20 Gustavus Weston, Twilight Spinner, 25 Bar.
This race has been won by a double-figured price contender for the last four seasons and the 2021 edition has the potential to throw up another big-priced success.3-year-olds have a poor record in this which is an issue for the likes of Dragon Symbol, who deserves to land a big one.
Art Power hits more of the trends than the other market principals but he’s a 7/2 chance with new betting sites in a race that looks wide open.
ROHAAN hasn’t been as good since but he’s two from two over Ascot’s 6f course, including a career-best effort in the Wokingham Stakes at the royal meeting, and he’s versatile regarding conditions. He hits all the key trends and gets his best chance of a Group 1 victory.
(subject to change) 9-4 Free Wind, 11-4 La Petite Coco, 4 Love, Snowfall, 9 Albaflora, Invite, 10 Eshaada, 16 Search For A Song, 25 La Joconde, Tribal Craft, 33 Lady Hayes, 50 Mystery Angel.
3-year-olds have a strong record in this so best to concentrate on that age group. The fast-improving FREE WIND looks an obvious starting point after making short work of her rivals in the Park Hill Stakes at Doncaster. She looks all over a Group 1 filly and has already proved herself with some cut in the ground. Free Wind also represents a stable that has won this race twice in the last six years.
Love looks the outstanding candidate from the older brigade, especially if conditions dry up. However, she wasn’t at her best when beaten in a Curragh Group 2 and although she has winning course form, that hasn’t been an advantage in recent years.
The filly that beat Love at the Curragh, La Petite Coco, has a very progressive profile, including on soft ground, and this 3-year-old looks the big danger to Free Wind despite the fact that she has only run once over this trip.
(subject to change) 13-8 Palace Pier, 7-4 Baaeed, 11-2 The Revenant, 8 Alcohol Free, 12 Master Of The Seas, 14 Benbatl, 16 Lady Bowthorpe, Mother Earth, 40 Njord, 50 Lord Glitters.
The 2021 QEII looks set to throw up one of the most intriguing match-ups in the miling division for some time.
PALACE PIER was clearly below par when a vanquished odds-on favourite in this race in 2020 but he is 4-4 in 2021, three of which came in Group 1 company, and he’s the standard setter in the division. However, the unbeaten Baaeed is a champion in waiting and looks a huge threat to the Gosden star.
Baaeed doesn’t have the body of work of Palace Pier but he hasn’t put a foot wrong in five career starts and he ultimately had little difficulty justifying his short odds in the Prix du Moulin last time. Both Palace Pier and Baaeed fit all the relevant trends but this is undoubtedly Baaeed’s toughest assignment to date and his unbeaten record is in danger. Palace Pier looks capable of atoning for last year’s disappointment in this race.
Back over a mile, Alcohol Free looks the pick of the females.
(subject to change) 7-4 Mishriff, 15-8 Adayar, 7 Addeybb, 8 Dubai Honour, Snowfall, 12 Lady Bowthorpe, 16 Love, Sealiway, 25 Al Aasy, 33 Helvic Dream, Bolshoi Ballet, Mac Swiney, Foxes Tales, 66 Euchen Glen.
Adayar looks a fascinating runner but 3-year-olds don’t have a great recent record in this contest and the drop back to ten furlongs, for all that he can often overrace, is a potential issue.
MISHRIFF was behind Aayar in the King George VI And Queen Elizabeth Qipco Stakes here in the summer but 1m4f stretches him and we saw just what he is capable of over this sort of trip when he demolished his Juddmonte International rivals last time. That’s up there with the best Flat performances of any horse in the world this year so, although he was heavily beaten in this race last year, Mishriff is taken to atone on what looks likely to be less testing ground.
Last year’s runaway winner Addeybb has to be respected, especially if he gets some cut, and he comes here fresher than most, having not raced since early July.