Royal Ascot - At The Races

15:40 Ascot 21 Jun 2017

Duke Of Cambridge Stakes (Group 2) (Str) (Class 1) (4YO plus)

Winner £114,271 - 14 ran

3

1m

Good to Firm (Watered)

View Course Guide

Weighed In

Last year’s race

Usherette
  • Winner: Usherette
  • Jockey: M Barzalona
  • Trainer: A Fabre
  • Owner: Godolphin S N C
  • Age: 4 Weight: 9st 3lb
  • Starting Price: 9/4f
  • Season Form Figures: 111
  • Previous Best: Dahlia Stakes (Group 2) (Fillies & Mares), Newmarket, May 2016

Known as the Windsor Forest Stakes up until four years ago, this Group 2 affair for older fillies and mares over the straight mile will be the fourteenth running since it was upgraded from being a Listed race at the September Meeting and a number of strong patterns have emerged since its upgrade. Peeress (14/1) and Amazing Maria (25/1) were hard to find but the favourite or second-favourite has won on eight occasions.

Only one of the ten fillies to run under Group 1 winning penalty (5lb) has even placed, though Usherette defied 3lb penalty in style 12 months ago. Twelve of the 13 winners had won a Group 2 or Group 3 race before with the other having won at Listed level.

A leading guide has been the Group 3 Princess Elizabeth Stakes at Epsom won this season in convincing style by Laugh Aloud following an equally-convincing success at Listed level at Goodwood. That Group 3 has featured three recent Duke Of Cambridge winners, though all three were beaten at Epsom. Three of the seven winners of that Group 3 event to run here went on to be placed.

Only one of the ten fillies to run under Group 1 winning penalty (5lb) has even placed, though Usherette defied 3lb penalty in style 12 months ago.

The Group 3 Dahlia Stakes at Newmarket won easily by Somehow is the other notable guide as the last eight winners to take their chance here have produced two winners, two seconds and a third plus Integral finished second three years ago before adding this more sought-after prize.

Of the 12 winners when this race was run at Royal Ascot, five had previously recorded a victory at the course and another two had been placed at the previous year’s Royal Meeting so quality course form is certainly a bonus.

Sir Michael Stoute won the first two runnings and later added two more successes with Strawberrydaquiri and Integral in addition to supplying three other second-place finishes so this is a race that he targets. Integral was a fourth winner in the race for Cheveley Park Stud three years ago and they have also owned no less than four second-places finishers. Last season’s Sandringham winner for John Gosden might represent them this year. Godolphin have supplied four beaten favourites but the Andre Fabre-trained Usherette put that right for them as the market leader 12 months ago.

The French are not to be underestimated having supplied two winners, two seconds and two thirds so pay any Gallic rivals plenty of respect. Qemah and Usherette (would need to be supplemented) would appear to be their best hopes of given the green light but they also hold Queen Anne entries.

Four-year-olds have had the best of it leading their older rivals 11-2 but they have held a numerical advantage making up approximately three-quarters of the total runners so don't read too much into that.

At a glance summary

Positives
The favourite or second-favourite
Princess Elizabeth Stakes runners (beaten fillies especially)
Contested the Dahlia Stakes (the winner especially)
Winning course form
Placed at Royal Ascot last year
Trained by Sir Michael Stoute
Owned by Cheveley Park Stud
French-trained fillies
Negatives
Yet to win a Group race
Running under a Group 1 penalty

Previous Winners
Year Going Ran Winner Draw Age Weight OR Form Last run Trainer (Distance) Jockey SP Time
2016 Soft 14 Usherette 10 4 9 3 - 117-111 45 days A Fabre M Barzalona 9/4 1:43.33
2015 Good to Firm 6 Amazing Maria 1 4 9 0 - 1000-33 25 days D O'Meara (239 miles) James Doyle 25/1 1:42.60
2014 Good to Firm 14 Integral 9 4 9 0 - 11712-2 45 days Sir M Stoute (88 miles) R L Moore 9/4 1:37.09
2013 Good to Firm 9 Duntle 1 4 8 12 - 1411D-1 38 days D Wachman (399 miles) W M Lordan 10/3 1:39.47
2012 Good 13 Joviality 3 4 8 12 - 21647-2 19 days J Gosden (88 miles) W Buick 11/1 1:38.37
2011 Good 13 Lolly For Dolly 5 4 8 12 - 45-1122 25 days T Stack (399 miles) W M Lordan 11/1 1:38.72
2010 Good to Firm 10 Strawberrydaiquiri 1 4 8 12 - 11114-1 45 days Sir M Stoute (88 miles) R L Moore 9/2 1:38.04
2009 Good to Firm 9 Spacious 6 4 8 12 - 24144-3 11 days J Fanshawe (88 miles) Johnny Murtagh 10/1 1:41.07
2008 Good to Firm 13 Sabana Perdida 8 5 8 12 - 81931-1 39 days A de Royer-Dupre C Lemaire 4/1 1:39.73
2007 Good 10 Nannina 7 4 8 12 - 12345-3 19 days J Gosden (88 miles) J Fortune 3/1 1:40.97
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