The 2015 Royal Ascot meeting begins on Tuesday 16th June and is one of the most eagerly anticipated sporting events of the year. The meeting, which attracts over 300,000 spectators every year, is set to feature some of the best flat racers in the world, and will be ridden by a number of the greatest jockeys in the business. We take a look at two of Royal Ascot’s biggest races and provide our thoughts on which horses, riders, owners and trainers could have a week to remember as they compete for over £5.5 million in prize money. For more information on the runners and riders, as well as the opportunity to place a bet on any of the races, please click here.
The Queen Anne Stakes
This race is the biggest and most prestigious of the opening day’s action and some of the greatest horses have won the Queen Anne Stakes. The legendary Frankel streaked clear to romp home in 2012, however it is unlikely that there will be a display of such dominance in this year’s race. At the time of writing, Solow is well priced for trainer Freddie Head and is arguably the finest horse in the field. The 5-year-old is currently available at 2/1 to earn his fifth successive victory, but the joint-top rated horse in the world Able Friend is set to attract some attention as the meeting draws nearer.
Punters should keep an eye out for the Richard Hughes and Richard Hannon connection in this race. The two have won three of the last seven Queen Anne Stakes races and it may be worth investing some time into finding out which horses these two are working with.
The Ascot Gold Cup
There have been plenty of excellent horses that have won the Ascot Gold Cup – with Queen Elizabeth II’s horse Estimate romping to victory in 2013. This year’s race is set to be a close encounter and there are a number of horses that are in with a genuine chance of victory. Brown Panther, who is owned by former Manchester United striker Michael Owen, may be the star horse in an attractive field. The 7-year-old cantered to a fantastic victory in the Dubai Gold Cup in March and it could be argued that he has a great chance.
Meanwhile, Forgotten Rules – trained by Dermot Weld – could feature in the places if he runs well, and has previously won at Ascot back in October. Looking at trainers, it may be wise to keep an eye on entrants in this race who have been trained by Aidan O’Brien. The Irishman has trained six of the last nine Ascot Gold Cup winners.