Royal Ascot - At The Races

Trendspotting

    David Myers has analysed all the data from past Royal meetings to reveal the facts no punter should bet without knowing. His series covers every aspect including trainers, jockeys, sires and form trends at the meeting.

By David Myers

Welcome to the Royal Ascot 2017 Trendspotting where I’ll be highlighting all of the key profitable statistics, trends and patterns to have emerged from the Royal Meeting in recent times.

From winning trainer/jockey combinations, breeding and the betting, through to the all-important draw, all the relevant information will be brought to your attention in the quest of finding the path to profit.

But the first port of call for many is checking which trainers and jockeys have proven themselves at this meeting in the past, and a glance at the table below highlights those handlers who have taken a shining to Royal Ascot’s winner's enclosure.

Top Trainers 2007-2016

Trainer W-R £P/L Non-Hcp Hcp 2yo 3yo 4yo+
A O'Brien 39-217 +30 37-196 2-21 9-50 15-108 15-59
J Gosden 21-158 0 14-108 7-50 4-14 7-85 10-59
Sir M Stoute 20-143 -21 15-90 5-53 -- 7-68 13-75
M Johnston 13-200 -98 9-93 4-107 1-52 9-92 3-56
S Bin Suroor 8-137 -63 6-90 2-47 1-18 4-44 3-75
W Ward 7-37 +35 7-37 -- 6-30 -- --
H Morrison 5-46 +21 1-15 4-31 -- 2-13 3-33
J Osborne 5-33 +27 2-16 3-17 1-10 2-4 2-19
W Haggas 5-94 -48 3-54 2-40 1-15 3-47 1-32
J Bolger 5-34 -15 5-34 -- 2-14 3-15 0-5
D Weld 4-25 +14 4-18 0-7 0-3 2-13 2-9
R Fahey 4-105 -14 2-49 2-56 1-30 2-25 1-50
C Cox 4-43 -4 4-23 0-20 1-9 0-11 3-23
E Dunlop 4-52 +9 2-26 2-26 1-7 1-20 2-25
M Bell 4-57 +12 2-26 2-31 1-7 3-32 0-18
M Channon 4-132 -17 2-82 2-50 2-52 1-42 1-36
K Ryan 4-77 -14 2-45 2-32 2-21 0-14 2-42
R Hannon 4-88 -65 3-56 1-32 2-28 1-38 1-22

With 93 Royal Ascot winners between them since 2007, Aidan O’Brien, Sir Michael Stoute, John Gosden and Mark Johnston are four trainers to look out for. However, with a clear level stakes loss in following all four blind, a closer look is required in order of highlighting where the profits lurk:

AIDAN O’BRIEN

Royal Ascot tally last five years:
2016: 7-26
2015: 5-18
2014: 2-25
2013: 4-26
2012: 2-20

Best races (all-time): Coventry Stakes (8); St James’s Palace Stakes (7); Gold Cup (7); Queen’s Vase (5); Jersey Stakes (3); Queen Anne Stakes (3); Chesham Stakes (3); Prince of Wales’s Stakes (2); Tercentenary Stakes (2); Coronation Stakes (2); Hardwicke Stakes (2); Norfolk Stakes (2); Ribblesdale Stakes (2)

Aidan O’Brien’s record at this meeting gets better and better, and having recorded a career best haul of seven winners here 12 months ago, punters need to take his runners very seriously, especially as he is enjoying such a good year in the Classics. The fact O’Brien returned a blind profit overall is also encouraging, and serves notice that there is value to be found via this popular yard – a recent reminder came via his 40/1 winner of the Derby.

O’Brien’s profits dipped over distances of 1m2f-1m4f, where he struck at just 7-62 (-32), but his performers over other trips shone at 32-155 (+£63).

Another factor that needs considering with O’Brien’s string is their form last time, as those that finished either first, second or third last time delivered at 30-140 (+£46) – similarly, those beaten no more than 4l last time showed a touch more profit at 33-145 (+£67).

Other sources of profit via O’Brien’s runners could be found in the following areas:

Group 2/Group 3/Listed races: 21-122 (+£54)
13/2 to 20/1: 11-90 (+£45)

JOHN GOSDEN

2016: 2-22
2015: 2-18
2014: 4-18
2013: 1-18
2012: 5-19

Best races: Prince of Wales’s Stakes (3); Britannia Stakes (3); King Edward VII Stakes (3); Wolferton Stakes (3); Jersey Stakes (2); Duke of Cambridge Stakes (2); Tercentenary Stakes (2); Coronation Stakes (2); Chesham Stakes (2); Royal Hunt Cup (2).

John Gosden can be relied upon to have a few winners at Royal Ascot, and while his runners break level for from a profit standpoint, concentrating on just his 2yos and 4yos returned a healthy 13-53 (+£55). It’s also worth sticking with the yard’s in-form runners beaten no more than 4l last time: 18-100 (+£39), while William Buick continues to be used to good effect at 11-57 (+£32).

Other areas of strength include:

12/1 or shorter: 20-95 (+£42)
Moving up in class: 15-103 (+£14)
Down in trip or same as last time: 18-98 (+£32); those upped in trip were only 1-37 (-£34)

SIR MICHAEL STOUTE

2016: 2-15
2015: 1-17
2014: 4-14
2013: 3-16
2012: 2-7

Best races: Hardwicke Stakes (10); King Edward VII Stakes (7); Duke of Edinburgh Stakes (5); King George V Stakes (4); Coronation Stakes (4); Queen’s Vase (4); Duke of Cambridge Stakes (3); Jersey Stakes (3); Ribblesdale Stakes (2); Wolferton Stakes (2); Queen of Alexandra Stakes (2); Tercentenary Stakes (2)

A double here 12 months ago kept Sir Michael Stoute’s backers happy, where he once again struck in the Hardwicke Stakes, making it 10 victories in the race, while adding a seventh victory in the King Edward VII Stakes. The Hardwicke also takes place during the second half of the week, where Stoute holds a better record:

Tuesday, Wednesay and Thursday: 6-86 (-£54)
Friday and Saturday: 14-57 (+£34)

Other areas of interest include:

1m4f-2m: 14-77 (+£29)
4yo’s: 12-52 (+£24)
Dropped in class or same as last time: 9-52 (+£20)
Ran last time at Epsom, Goodwood, Newbury or York: 11-48 (+£30)

MARK JOHNSTON

2016: 0-20
2015: 2-20
2014: 2-19
2013: 0-19
2012: 1-16

Best races: Queen’s Vase (7); King George V Stakes (4); Hardwicke Stakes (4); Ascot Gold Cup (3); Chesham Stakes (3); Duke of Edinburgh Stakes (3); King Edward VII Stakes (2); Sandringham Handicap (2).

The law of averages suggests a blank for Mark Johnston last year could see him back in the winner’s enclosure this time around, and the biggest clue in nailing one of his winners was to check the market. Since 2007, each of Johnston’s 13 winners returned at 14/1 or shorter (13-81, +£20), compared to those bigger at 0-119.

Outside the big four trainers are further interesting angles, with the American trainer, Wesley Ward, becoming a regular at this fixture. Indeed, Ward has sent at least one runner to Royal Ascot in all bar one of the last eight years, for an impressive return of 7-37 (+£35). His runners still offer value too, with his 2015 winner, Undrafted, scoring at 14/1, though as a whole it is his sprinters that take centre stage, especially over the minimum 5f trip (6-21 +£36).

Saeed Bin Suroor‘s record in the Queen Anne Stakes (7 wins), Ascot Gold Cup (5) and Ribblesdale Stakes (5) is to be noted, but with just one winner from 57 runners during his last four Royal Ascot visits, punters should tread carefully. Two other yards that used to be regulars in the winner’s enclosure here but may need treating carefully are James Fanshawe (0-15 since 2012) and Willie Haggas (1-66 since 2011).

Elsewhere, Hughie Morrison is still a trainer to look out for in handicaps (4-31 +£15), while the jury remains out regarding Richard Hannon’s runners. Despite recording a double in 2014 and 2015, Hannon missed out 12 months ago having sent 27 runners, and with an overall loss of -£65 to level stakes, a watching brief is advised, for now.

Despite missing out with seven runners in 2016, Willie Mullins is still of interest having recorded four winners here from 2012-2015, while Robert Cowell has a strong recent record via four winners since 2011 (4-14 +£35).

Top Jockeys 2007-2016

Jockey W-R £ P/L Non-Hcp Hcp Round Straight
R Moore 42-274 -40 30-191 12-83 27-129 15-45
L Dettori 18-223 -78 15-159 3-64 9-100 9-123
W Buick 16-172 -29 11-110 5-62 10-79 6-93
J Spencer 12-174 -27 9-112 3-62 4-73 8-101
J Fanning 6-85 -31 4-40 2-45 6-45 0-40
A Kirby 6-69 +4 4-45 1-24 2-28 4-41
J Doyle 6-98 -15 4-60 2-38 2-42 4-56
P Smullen 6-64 -8 6-44 0-20 4-25 2-39
K Manning 5-34 -16 5-34 -- 3-14 2-20
S Drowne 5-32 +149 1-14 4-18 3-10 2-22
T Queally 5-107 -72 4-68 1-39 2-48 3-59
W Lordan 4-35 -9 3-20 1-15 0-4 4-31
R Kingscote 4-54 -7 1-32 3-22 1-12 3-42
O Peslier 4-48 -7 4-39 0-9 2-19 2-29
P Hanagan 4-131 -50 1-76 3-55 2-50 2-81

RYAN MOORE

2016: 6-29
2015: 9-29
2014: 6-29
2013: 3-29
2012: 5-24

Best races (all-time): Hardwicke Stakes (4); Duke of Edinburgh Stakes (3); Queen of Alexandra Stakes (3); Tercentenary Stakes (2); Queen’s Vase (3); Britannia Stakes (2); Wolferton Stakes (2); Chesham Stakes (2); Gold Cup (2); Ribblesdale Stakes (2); Coventry Stakes (2)

With another six winners here 12 months ago, Ryan Moore’s tally during the last three Royal Ascots now stands out to 21 winners. Moore’s portfolio of winning big races is growing too, with last year seeing a second victory in the Wolferton Stakes, Chesham Stakes, Gold Cup, Ribblesdale Stakes and Coventry Stakes.

Moore will again rely on a strong book of rides courtesy of both Aidan O’Brien (13-59 +£3) and Sir Michael Stoute (16-89 -£3) supplying quality horses for him to ride. Such quality produces numerous favourites, where Moore delivered for punters at 23-62 (+£18), though his record as a whole on fancied runners at 8/1 or shorter reads well at 39-159 (+£40).

As for other clues pinpointing Moore’s strengths at this meeting, then the following list is worth looking out for:

Round Course: 27-129 (+£13)
Beaten a neck to 5l last time: 18-96 (+£34); those that won offered poor value at 20-112 (-£22)

FRANKIE DETTORI

2016: 4-23
2015: 3-20
2014: 2-21
2013: 0-20
2012: 2-25

Best races: Queen Anne Stakes (6); Ribblesdale Stakes (6); Ascot Gold Cup (5); Chesham Stakes (4); Sandringham Handicap (4); King Edward VII Stakes (4); Norfolk Stakes (3); Prince of Wales’s Stakes (3); Royal Hunt Cup (2); Queen’s Vase (2); Queen Mary Stakes (2); St James’s Palace Stakes (2)

The one jockey that springs to most people’s minds when Ascot gets mentioned is Frankie Dettori, and at the age of 46, the popular Italian is still a force to be reckoned with in Berkshire. Having endured a lean spell by his standards at this meeting from 2011 to 2013, he has now partnered nine winners since.

While Dettori should be respected in most races, it’s worth remembering that he rode just one winner away from the major Pattern races at 1-54. He also rode a couple winners for Wesley Ward (2-6 +£12) and Richard Hannon (2-8 +£8), while those Dettori rode last time won here at 12-87 (+£26).

JAMIE SPENCER

2016: 1-16
2015: 1-16
2014: 0-19
2013: 2-26
2012: 0-12

Best races: Albany Stakes (4); Britannia Stakes (3); Coventry Stakes (2); Sandringham Handicap (2)

Jamie Spencer once again demonstrated his ability on the Straight Course (8-101 +£24) here last year when partnering his third Britannia Stakes winner. That victory also came for Jamie Osborne, for whom he is 2-4 (+10) – the two losers were also placed – while the Irishman also has a better record with younger 2-3yo horses, especially the juveniles at 5-32 (+£65).

WILLIAM BUICK

2016: 2-26
2015: 2-22
2014: 3-26
2013: 1-23
2012: 5-22

Best races: King Edward VII Stakes (2)

William Buick rarely leaves this five-day meeting without a winner, and has now ridden 13 winners during the last five years. The majority of those came for John Gosden (11-57 +£32), while his record on runners with realistic chances at 12/1 or shorter saw him strike at 15-87 (+£33). He also got a good feel for most of his Ascot winners, with Buick having ridden them last time out (14-94 +£35).

Elsewhere, Joe Fanning’s six winners all came for Mark Johnston, with his preferred distances being 1m4f+ (6-38 +£15).

Adam Kirby enjoyed a memorable treble at last year’s meeting here and has now partnered six winners since 2012. His record on older runners aged 4yo+ stands at 4-35 (+£33), with his partnership for Clive Cox 4-24 (+£15).

James Doyle has also climbed the Ascot ladder in recent years courtesy of six winners since 2013, though Silvestre De Silva enjoyed less luck at 3-83.

FORM

With last time out form such a valuable component in finding winners at Royal Ascot, knowing which racecourses and race types to have supplied winners at Ascot in the past can help point up some handy clues, as can be seen from the table below, listing the most productive tracks.

2007-2016

Track W-R % £1 P/L
Newmarket (Rowley) 41-522 8% -150
Curragh 29-253 11% -24
Newbury 25-244 10% -13
York 23-422 5% -190
Epsom 23-338 7% -113
Haydock 19-311 6% -88
Sandown 12-250 5% -93
Ascot 11-246 4% -110
Doncaster 10-138 7% -42
Leopardstown 10-78 13% +2
Goodwood 10-243 4% -131
Chester 7-163 4% -101
Newmarket (July) 7-66 11% -17
Naas 5-70 7% -17
Lingfield 5-125 4% -71
Kempton 4-100 4% +28

The above table highlights the importance of last time out form at Newmarket, Newbury, Epsom, York and the Curragh, though the fact they all returned a level stakes loss means a touch more digging is required.

Newmarket form

When considering a runner that ran at Newmarket (Rowley) last time, then make sure they are fancied at Ascot in the 9/1 or shorter region, as they delivered at 30-154 (+£41).

Epsom form

With the Epsom Derby meeting staged just weeks prior to the royal meeting, it may come as no surprise that 23 Ascot winners arrived via that route during the last 10 years. As with Newmarket runners, the biggest pointer came via the market, as plenty of Epsom runners were sent here with unrealistic chances, but concentrating purely on those at 16/1 or shorter returned 21-155 (+£23).

Newbury form

It paid to keep things simple when studying a runner with Newbury form last time out, as those racing over the same trip came in at 16-106 (+£12), while Newbury handicappers should also be monitored (8-64 +£41).

Curragh form

Runners crossing the Irish Sea and heading down to Ascot having last run at the Curragh have now supplied the second most winners at the meeting since 2007. As for which ones punters should look out for, then in-form performers that made the top three at the Curragh connected at 27-154 (+£61).

Royal Ascot handicaps 2007-2016

Last time out Wins-Runs £1 P/L
Won 30-427 -175
Runner-up 19-257 +33
Third 13-241 -80
Fourth to eighth 14-662 -424
Ninth to sixteenth 11-268 -25
Seventeenth or worse 1-39 -5
0-9 career runs 47-865 -388
10-16 career runs 20-434 -29
2-3 previous handicap wins 41-546 +13

While last time out winners topped the chart in providing 30 handicap winners at Royal Ascot (-£175), there was much value in following runners-up from last time out (+£33). Another pointer came in siding with runners that had won just 2-3 handicaps beforehand – in other words, experienced, but not exposed.

Three-year-old handicaps 2007-2016

Punters eyeing up the handicaps throughout the week will have two kinds to study, those for all ages, such as the Wokingham, and those for three-year-olds only, like the Britannia and King George V Stakes. With that in mind, it could be worth noting the following criteria when studying three-year-old handicaps.

Positives:
8-10lb higher from last time: 11-68 (+£37)
Sixth to eighth in the weights: 8-86 (+£29)
Favourites (incl joint): 8-32 (+£11)

Negatives:
American-bred 2-91 (-£51)
Ran in maiden last time out: 1-53 (-£32)

DRAW

The draw is always a major talking point across the five days, during which time the big-field events staged on the straight cause punters headaches. It may therefore prove worthwhile looking at the stats from the last five years of this fixture to see if there were any trends – more so the ‘live’ clues which can develop as the week develops, as a race like the Royal Hunt Cup (1m) may influence what happens in the Britannia over the same trip.

Race/Year 2016 2015 2014 2013 2012
5f/6f
King's Stand 5f 8/17 sft 3/18 gf 8/16 gd 14/19 gd 7/22 sft
Windsor Castle 5f 1/22 sft 6/27 gf 25/24 gd 28/24 gd 18/23 gd
Queen Mary 5f 14/17 sft 20/20 gf 12/21 gf 16/23 gf 5/27 gd
Coventry 6f 13/18 sft 10/17 gf 1/15 gd 15/15 gd 13/22 gs
Diamond Jubilee 6f 3/9 gs 6/15 gf 4/14 gf 15/18 gf 15/14 gd
Wokingham 6f 28/28 gs 21/25 gf 27/28 gf 22/26 gf 15/28 gd
7f/1m
Jersey 7f 7/19 sft 9/16 gf 19/23 gd 4/21 gf 6/22 gd
Sandringham 1m 17/21 sft 14/17 gf 22/24 gf 3/26 gf 18/17 gd
Royal Hunt Cup 1m 4/28 sft 11/30 gf 33/28 gf 6/28 gf 33/30 gd
Britannia 1m 12/28 sft 11/28 gf 26/20 gf 15/27 gf 6/29 gd
1m2f/1m4f
Wolferton 1m2f 5/15 gs 7/13 gf 15/13 gf 7/15 gf 8/13 sft
King George V 1m4f 11/16 sft 20/17 gf 14/18 gf 10/18 gf 17/18 gs
Duke of Edinburgh 1m4f 19/19 gs 21/17 gf 12/18 gf 10/16 gf 12/18 gs
gf = good to firm; gd = good; gs = good to soft; s = soft

Straight Course
Low numbers came back into things a bit more on soft ground last year, but overall it was a mixed bag of results. In fact, when the ground was on the soft side during the last five years, a very high draw from the top four stalls won just two of the 12 races.

However, on faster ground (good to firm), single-figure stalls got less of a look in, especially in 20+ runner fields where a double-figure stall won 12 of the 17 races. In fact, high numbers in general came out best in the big fields on all ground since 2012.

Straight course (5f-1m) – 20+ runner fields since 2012
Low: 10 wins
Middle: 7 wins
High: 15 wins

Round course (1m2f/1m4f)
As for distances on the round course over 1m2f-1m4f, then double-figure stalls dominated, with runners tending to fan out down the middle in an attempt to avoid getting caught on the inside (low stalls). This became more pronounced in bigger fields, as can be seen:

16+ runner fields
Stalls 1-9: 0 win
Stalls 10-21: 10 wins

Finally, stalls 1-6 won only one of the 15 races over 1m2f-1m4f at this meeting since 2011, regardless of field size.

PROFILES

With six superb two-year-old events for punters to sort through across the five days, the use of statistics are required in order of cracking such tricky puzzles, and with that in mind, here are some handy stats that may help point the way.

Two-year-old races 2007-2016

Last time out Wins-Runs (%) £1 P/L
Won 42-535 -183
Runner-up 3-149 -94
Third 5-109 +78
Fourth 3-66 -21
Fifth or worse 0-94 -94
No. of UK runs
No run 7-70 +2
One run 25-318 -124
Two runs 18-365 -22
Three runs 7-175 -113
Four runs+ 3-89 -48
Bred
GB 17-369 -73
IRE 26-498 -237
USA 16-135 +6
FR 1-12 +3
(Not including non-British form)

Of the above stats, it’s interesting to note that those making their UK debuts having raced abroad were the only juveniles to return a profit.

American-bred (USA) or French-bred also returned a higher strike-rate in double-figures, while on the trainer front, Wesley Ward has a crisp record of 6-30 (+£27), with Aidan O’Brien also well in profit at 9-50 (+£24).

The final pointer to take into account regarding juveniles is that of the 60 winners here since 2007, 42 won last time out (including three from abroad), while those that finished fifth or worse last time failed to step up here at 0-94.

Group Events

Group 1 (2007-2016)

Category W-R (%) £1
Overall 71-864 -358
Group 1 last time 31-240 -66
Group 2, 3 or Listed 27-455 -248
Non-Group/Listed 1-50 -24
Won last time 30-199 -79
Beaten under 1l last time 6-108 -44
Beaten 1-2l last time 8-87 -17
Highest Class win: Group 1 21-131 +17
Highest Class win: Group 2/3 19-292 -128

Group 2

Category W-R (%) £1
Overall 71-900 -361
Group 1 last time 6-67 -32
Group 2 last time 4-40 +11
Group 3 last time 17-117 -10
Listed last time 15-201 -64
Sir M Stoute 10-44 +18
J Gosden 7-43 +6
A O Brien 9-59 +4
Wesley Ward 4-14 +5
Highest Class win: Group 1 2-15 -6
Highest Class win: Group 2/3 23-115 +56
Highest Class win: Listed 10-124 -46

Group 3

Category W-R (%) £1
Overall 33-504 -178
Group 1 last time 8-47 +50
Group 2, 3 or Listed last time 8-171 -120
A O Brien 6-32 +25
(Not including non-British form)

In the Group 1s, make sure to stick with those to have already won a Group 1 race, while in Group 2s, concentrate on runners whose highest class win was in a Group 2 or Group 3 – in other words, ignore both Group 1 winners and runners jumping up too much in class (from Listed etc). As for the Group 3 races, then look out for classy performers dropping down from a Group 1, while Aidan O’Brien mopped up six Group 3s for a good profit.

BREEDING

SIRES AT ASCOT 2012-2017

Sire W-R £1 5f-6f 7f-1m 1m2f- 1m4f 1m6f- 2m5f Good Gd-fm Soft Heavy
Dubawi 27-146 +23 2-15 8-70 16-51 1-10 18-102 9-44
Galileo 23-175 -42 0-3 5-38 13-83 5-51 11-107 12-68
Oasis Dream 23-169 +40 10-82 8-71 4-14 1-2 15-127 8-42
Exceed And Excel 22-190 +105 11-96 11-90 0-4 -- 18-132 4-58
Dark Angel 16-165 +27 7-60 9-91 0-9 -- 9-117 7-48
Dansili 15-115 +6 1-7 7-46 7-47 0-15 10-80 5-35
Shamardal 15-115 -7 5-39 8-52 2-22 0-2 9-79 6-36
Dutch Art 13-92 +5 7-38 5-49 1-5 -- 8-64 5-28
Cape Cross 11-128 -30 2-14 4-74 5-28 0-12 11-94 0-34
Kodiac 11-133 -44 6-93 3-33 1-4 1-3 7-93 4-40
Invincible Spirit 10-149 -72 4-63 5-70 1-14 0-2 5-103 5-46
Pivotal 10-137 -66 2-57 5-56 3-22 0-2 4-79 6-58
New Approach 8-63 -13 2-3 3-18 3-34 0-8 6-43 2-20
Danehill Dancer 8-79 -26 1-11 4-34 3-22 0-3 7-58 1-21
Montjeu 8-73 -29 -- 0-3 1-26 7-44 6-49 2-24
Acclamation 8-164 -123 4-16 4-41 0-6 0-1 7-120 1-44
Authorized 8-53 +13 0-1 0-6 5-27 3-19 4-33 4-20
(Only sires with at least five Ascot runners during the last 12 months included)

One of the last factors odds compilers will be taking into account before pricing up this week’s big events is the sire of each runner, but a glance at the above table may help find some value.

The fact four of the five leading sires all show a clear level stakes profit is evidence that a horse’s breeding lines can point the way to value, and it is one of those aforementioned four sires, Oasis Dream, whose progeny hold some interesting entries. The lightly raced 6yo, Sacred Act, is one, and goes for the Royal Hunt Cup following a career best third at Newmarket when badly drawn.

Another profitable sire is Exceed And Excel, whose progeny did well on fast ground at Ascot, and his daughter, Priceless, could go well in the King’s Stand Stakes. A dual winner already this season on firm ground, she is improving and looks well priced at 10/1.

Dubawi heads the leaderboard, and continues to send out the winners at Ascot during the last 12 months, as the following list shows.

Ascot – April 2016 to May 2017

Dubawi 8-39 (+£12)
Galileo 8-48 (+£16)
Exceed And Excel 6-47 (+£10)
Kodiac 5-47 (+£11)
Invincible Spirit 5-34 (-£3)
Dark Angel 5-53 (+£41)

Dubawi’s progeny will be represented at Ascot, including the recent Epsom winner, Laugh Aloud. Godolphin’s improving filly has bolted up in Listed company on her last two outings, and looks good enough to hold her own in the Group 2 Duke of Cambridge Stakes.

Dubawi has also produced plenty of Pattern winners at all tracks this year, though Galileo is some way clear at the top of the 2017 list.

Pattern races in 2017 (GB & Ireland)

Galileo 16-80 (-£24)
Fastnet Rock 7-27 (+£2)
Dubawi 7-30 (-£2)
High Chaparral 5-11 (+£24)
Dark Angel 5-23 (-£2)
Acclamation 4-18 (+£12)
Exceed And Excel 4-23 (+£1)

While Galileo’s runners did the business in Group/Listed races this year, punters would’ve shown a disappointing level stakes loss, and with his 3yo son, Churchill, currently odds-on for the St James’s Palace Stakes, there may be more value in the likes ofUlysses, who could go for either the Prince of Wales’s or Hardwicke Stakes.

TRIALS & POINTERS

The most popular approach for the majority of punters when weighing-up a bet is to refer to a horse’s last time out run, and there is good reason, as last time out form is obviously the most reliable – no breaking news there!

However, the type of race a horse ran in remains of importance, especially at a major festival like Royal Ascot where certain races have been superb pointers in the past and can once more be trusted.

With that in mind, listed below are the remaining long-term leading trials & pointers in the UK to have provided numerous Ascot winners since 1997.

Race Subsequent winners at Royal Ascot
Irish 2,000 Guineas 16 - St James Palace Stakes (13), Jersey Stakes (3)
Lockinge Stakes 11 - Queen Anne Stakes (10), Duke of Cambridge Stakes (1)
Henry II Stakes 10 - Gold Cup (7), Queen Alexandra Stakes (3)
1,000 Guineas 10 - Coronation (7), Sandringham Hcp (2), Ribblesdale (1)
Coronation Cup 8 - Hardwicke Stakes (7) Prince of Wales's Stakes (1)
Epsom Oaks 7 - Ribblesdale (5), Coronation (1), Sandringham (1)
Epsom Derby 7 - K Edward VII (2), Hampton Court (2), Queen’s Vase (1) Sandringham Hcp (1), St James’s Palace Stakes (1)
Temple Stakes 7 - King's Stand Stakes (7)
Tattersalls Gold Cup 6 - Prince of Wales (5), Wolferton Stakes (1)
Hambleton Handicap 6 - Wolferton (3), Royal Hunt Cup (2), Prince of Wales (1)
Duke of York Stakes 6 - Diamond Jubilee Stakes (6)
Victoria Cup 6 - Royal Hunt Cup (2), Buckingham Palace (2), Wokingham (2)
Lingfield Derby Trial 6 - Queens Vase (4), K George V (1), K Edward VII (1)
2,000 Guineas 5 - Jersey Stakes (3), St James's Palace Stakes (2)
Kings Stand Stakes 5 - Diamond Jubilee Stakes (4), Wokingham (1)
Irish 1,000 Guineas 5 - Coronation Stakes (4); Jersey Stakes
Saval Beg Stakes 5 - Gold Cup (4), Queen Alexandra Stakes (1)
Ormonde Stakes 5 - Hardwicke Stakes (4), Cumberland Lodge Stakes (1)
Chester Cup 4 - Ascot Stakes (2), Queen Alexandra Stakes (2)
King Charles II Stks 4 - Jersey Stakes (4)
Fairway Stakes 4 - King Edward VII (2), Queens Vase (1) Hampton Court (1)
Ascot Stakes 4 - Queen Alexandra Stakes (4)
Princess Elizabeth 4 - Duke of Cambridge Stakes (4)
National Stakes 4 - Queen Mary Stakes (3), Norfolk Stakes (1)
Huxley Stakes 4 - Hardwicke Stakes (4)
London Gold Cup 4 - Tercentenary (2), K Edward VII (1), King George V (1)
Brigadier Gerard 3 - Hardwicke Stakes (2), Prince of Wales's Stakes (1)
Hilary Needler 3 - Queen Mary Stakes (2), Windsor Castle (1)
Yorkshire Cup 3 - Gold Cup (2), Queen Alexandra (1)
Dante Stakes 3 - King Edward VII Stakes (2), Hampton Court Stakes (1)
Silver Bowl Handicap 3 - Britannia Stakes (3)
Greenham Stakes 3 - St James's Palace Stakes (3)
Marygate Stakes 3 - Queen Mary Stakes (3)

Having recorded the 2,000 Guineas double in the Irish version last month, Churchill now heads to the St James’s Palace Stakes, a race won on 13 occasions in the last 20 years by runners arriving from the Curragh Classic.

The Lockinge Stakes has also proven a solid pointer to Ascot, having provided 10 winners of the Queen Anne Stakes since 1997. This year’s impressive winner from Newbury is Ribchester, who could be difficult to catch if bagging the rail.

In the stayers division, Big Orange looks a real contender for the Gold Cup if the ground comes up on the firm side. This 6yo never saw another rival when taking the Henry II Stakes at Sandown last month (produced seven Gold Cup winners), where he bounced off the fast ground. His record is now 4-5 on good to firm, and a sunny Ascot would make him each-way value at 14/1.

As for the fillies, then Winter took the 1,000 Guineas and could now run in either the Coronation Stakes or Ribblesdale Stakes, though history suggests it could be wise having a crack at the former – only one of the last 20 Ribblesdale winners arrived via the 1,000 Guineas, but the HQ Classic produced seven Coronation winners.

Meanwhile, both the Epsom and Oaks took place recently, and the former provided seven Ascot winners since 1997. Two of those came in the King Edward VII Stakes, which could be the target for Godolphin’s Derby fifth, Benbatl, who finished strongly and represents Saeed bin Suroor, who won the King Edward twice previously.

The Oaks has also provided seven Ascot winners during the last two decades, five of whom took the Ribblesdale. Two of the last three Ribblesdale winners were also trained by Aidan O’Brien, who could be back for more with either of the respective Oaks second and third, Rhododendron and Alluringly.

BETTING

2007-2016

Clear/joint favourite Wins-Runs £1 P/L
Overall 96-320 +18
Non-handicap 79-226 +26
Handicap 17-94 -8
Group 1 31-78 +7
Group 2 25-72 +14
Group 3 13-36 +10
Listed 15-50 +8
2yos 20-64 +6
3yos 37-114 +26
4yo+ 39-142 -14
Won last time 62-195 +12
Runner-up last time 6-47 -26
Third last time 10-30 +13
Fourth or worse last time 10-30 +11
(Not including non-British form)

Favourite backers will be hoping for another five days of bookie bashing, as the market leader boasts one of the best records amongst racing’s major festivals. Non-handicaps provided the majority of profits for the jolly, while Group and Listed events also proved kind.

It’s worth noting, however, that 4yo+ favourites had an inferior strike-rate to the younger runners for an overall loss (-£14), unlike the 3yo jollies that shone at 37-114 (+£26).

As for a favourites’ last run, then be wary of market leaders who finished runner-up last time out, unlike last time out winners at 62-195 (+£12).

Second favourite (incl joint) Wins-Runs £1 P/L
Overall 39-309 -79
Non-handicap 31-219 -50
Handicap 8-90 -28
Group 1 9-71 -25
Group 2 12-74 -16
Group 3 3-36 -12
Listed 7-52 -8
2yos 6-61 -28
3yos 15-107 -14
4yo+ 18-141 -36
Won last time 22-153 -24
Runner-up last time 5-50 -18
Third last time 2-23 -11
Fourth or worse last time 8-61 -12
(Not including non-British form)

With favourites producing such a glowing record at Royal Ascot, their deputies were somewhat put to the sword, returning an overall loss of -£79 since 2007. However, there was one glimmer of hope for second favourite backers in specific areas – for instance, those to have who arrived via Newbury struck here at 6-18 (+£20), while the second day of the meeting (Wednesday) saw second favs triumph at 11-64 (+£8).

Value

When studying winners at 10/1 or bigger, not many standout clues jump out towards the path to riches, but those priced at 10/1 to 33/1 that finished ninth or worse last time out delivered at 12-209 (+£47) – backing them each-way would have seen 24 more placed for an EW strike-rate of 17%.

There may also be a clue to nailing a big-priced winner via the draw, as those who started at 33/1 to 100/1 on the straight course from stalls 26 to 33 popped up at 12-144 (+£104).

Placepots

The average payout at Royal Ascot since 2012 was around £900, with day two averaging beyond that amount, boosted by a chunky £5k payout in 2013, when the first four home in the Royal Hunt Cup returned 33/1, 40/1, 50/1 and 25/1. But, for punters seeking consistency and a more realistic chance of nailing ‘the pot”, then day one – with just one handicap – paid out £200+ in four of the last five years. Good luck.

Day one: £1,219 - £175 - £200 - £564 - £872 (average £606)
Day two: £165 - £301 - £86 - £5,559 - £1,326 (average £1,487)
Day three: £299 - £122 - £1,376 - £63 - £1,505 (average £673)
Day four: £1,251 - £139 - £84 - £195 - £257 (average £385)
Day five: £1,080 - £4,385 - £38 - £844 - £508 (average £1,371)

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