Thoughts on Royal Ascot Runners Wednesday
Our first runner of the day is Don’t Tell Claire in the one mile Kensington Palace Handicap at 3.05. Regular partner Jack Mitchell will be aboard for the mile contest on the round course. Next up is Astro King in the Royal Hunt Cup at 5.00. Richard Kingscote will be in the saddle for the one mile on the straight course.
Don’t Tell Claire
Don’t Tell Claire was beaten four and half lengths in this last season after a somewhat troubled passage. The race looks a deeper contest than in previous years.It will require a career best from the six year old. This is not beyond the realms of possibility, she recorded her best ever Timeform Rating on her most recent start. The mare has been given a challenging draw in stall 18 and will need some luck in running.
The Irish Raiders look to hold a strong hand here, last time out Listed winner Indian Wish looks a danger. Villanova Queen and Yerwanthere also have reasonable stakes form. Crystal Caprice won a handicap on the straight course here last September before earning black type. She showed enough when fourth last time over further to think that with the drop to a mile means she remains a player.
Don’t Tell Claire runs in the colours of Andrew Stonehill. She was purchased as a yearling for the Stonehill’s by Daniel & Claire for just £15,000. The mare has been an absolute joy to train, winning five races including class 2 handicaps at Ascot and Newmarket, with many good placed efforts along the way too. She is cared for at home by Jan Kasecky, she will be led up Ilse Belien and overseen by Tamsin Karn who often rides her out.
Astro King made a very encouraging start to life at Sarsen Farm with a very good fourth at York last time out. A little slow away he warmed to his task as the race went on. Were it not for meeting trouble in running at a critical point would likely have finished very close. In a race where they broke the course record, his jockey crossed the line full of running and without having asked a serious question. We were still learning about the horse prior to that run and there were one or two hiccoughs on the way. Things have gone smoothly since the run at York.
Astro King looks to have a decent chance in what appears a very open race. Former Britannia Handicap winner Perotto has been backed as if a big run is expected and warrants respect. The very lightly raced seven year old Ghaly may not have shown the full extent of his ability, albeit he has not been particularly ambitiously campaigned. He has many long absences in his C.V. so its hard to gauge him. Reach for the Moon needs to put a couple of poor runs behind him, but has good form in the book as a younger horse. Blue for You comes out of the same race as Astro King and had a less than ideal draw that day and is another to look out for. Tempus is another classy horse who ran well in this last year.
Astro King runs for Capture the Moment, Lofthouse and Carter. He was purchased at the Tattersalls Horses in Training sale for 36,000 Guineas by Daniel & Claire. She is cared for at home by Jan Kasecky, he will be led up by Yard Manager Lauren Webb. He is regularly ridden in his homework by Mark Lawson.