ROYAL ASCOT 2014 DIGEST

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Updated: June 21, 2014

Beautiful weather greeted the throngs of race goers attending the festival this week. The official course going was Good to Firm (Good in places) and regular watering of the ground was required to keep the course in pristine condition.

6-5-4-3-2 to 1

Six

Gold Cup Winner Leading Light (purple silks). Image credit @Channel4Racing

Gold Cup Winner Leading Light (purple silks). Image credit @Channel4Racing

Trainer Aidan O’Brien already had five Gold Cup winners to his credit as his son Joseph saddled up the race favourite Leading Light at 10-11 odds on day three. Such was the excitement surrounding this horse that one punter placed a £100,000 bet. In a tremendous three horse finish Leading Light won by a neck over last year’s winner 8-1 Estimate owned by the Queen. A creditable third place went to 40-1 Missunited just a short head behind. The victory gave trainer Aidan O’Brien a record sixth Gold Cup win.

On three of the five days of racing there were six different winning trainers. Aidan O’Brien and Sir Michael Stoute had two winners on day three and five respectively.

Ryan Moore was top jockey for the week with six winners, three of them coming on the final day. The mounts were Integral, Cannock Chase, Rizeena, Arab Spring, Telescope and Pique Sous.

Five

Royal Ascot is an incredible five day festival consisting of thirty races showcasing the best in British flat horse-racing.

Four

Four jockeys enjoyed their first ever Royal Ascot win this week. David Probert landed a win aboard 14-1 Born in Bombay on day three in the Britannia. Andrea Atzeni with mount Cursory Glance tasted success in the Albany on day four. In the following race the Wolferton George Baker was victorious with Contributer. And on the last day George Chaloner won aboard Baccarat in the Wokingham.

Both John Gosden and Sir Michael Stoute had four victories as trainer this week. Winning Gosden trained horses were Kingman, The Fugue, Eagle Top and Richard Pankhurst. Winning Stoute trained horses were Integral, Cannock Chase, Arab Spring and Telescope.

Father and son team Aidan (trainer) and Joseph (jockey) managed four second places, two thirds and two winners this week.

Three

Toronado. Image credit @Channel4Racing

Toronado first Royal Ascot 2014 winner. Image credit @Channel4Racing

The inaugural race of the festival the Queen Anne Stakes seen Toronado the 4-5 F win by ¾ of a length having not raced since August last year. It was the third time that the horse has won her first race of the season.

Trainer Eddie Lyman had three winners at Royal Ascot this week having only managed his first success at the festival last year.

On day two in the Royal Hunt it was third time lucky for Field of Dream a winner at 20-1 by 1 ¼ lengths. In two previous attempts the horse came in fourth and sixth but victory came this time with the aid of a hood (to cut out the noise) and blinkers (limited vision of the field).

Trainer Andrew Balding (brother of Claire) enjoyed his third Royal Ascot win with Born of Bombay. Previously he tasted victory in the Queen Alex of 2013 and the Wokingham in 2007.

Three stewards enquiries for the week. In the Tercentenary on day three winning Cannock Chase drifted in the final furlong impeding Barley Mow as it began to fade from contention. However, the final result remained. Then on day four a lengthy enquiry involved the Queens Vase race but none of the results were altered. And on the final day an enquiry did not change the placings in the Diamond Jubilee.

Two

On day two of the festival jockey P J Smullen managed back to back wins in the Jersey Stakes with Mustajeeb a 9-2 JF and Anthem Alexander a 9-4F in the Queen Mary.

On day three jockey Joseph O’Brien managed back to back wins with Bracelet at 10-1 in the Ribblesdale and Leading Light 10-11F in the Gold Cup.

Jockey Frankie Dettori had two winners this week with The Wow Signal and Baitha Alga.

Dettori dismounts Baitha Alga. Image credit @Channel4Racing

Dettori dismounts Baitha Alga. Image credit @Channel4Racing

One

One photo finish on day two in the Sandringham Handicapwhen four horses (from 24) enjoyed an incredible sprint finish to the line. Muteela took victory by a short head as 9-2F with Queen Catrine second at 14-1. Just ½ a length behind Wee Jean came in at 16-1 in third and a neck behind Graceful Grit at 25-1 odds was fourth.

Trainer Aidan O’Brien had to wait until day three before securing his first Royal Ascot win of 2014. In a tight finish for the Ribblesdale 10-1 Bracelet was victorious by ½ a length over Lustrous at 16-1. Only a head behind in third place came 20-1 Criteria. Having waited two days for a win Aidan’s stable then had another success about half an hour later in the Gold Cup.

Jockey Kieran Fallon got his first and only winner of the week riding Elite Army 4-1 JF to a ¾ length victory in the King George V. Kieran’s last Royal Ascot victory came in 2012 as 2013 proved rather unlucky for him with a winning drought. But Elite Army gave Kieran career Royal Ascot win number thirty.

Owner Lady Bamford had her first ever Royal Ascot win with her horse Eagle Top in the King Edward VII Stakes.

Eagle Top. Image credit @Channel4Racing

Eagle Top wins for Lady Bamford. Image credit @Channel4Racing

Bits and Pieces

Telescope ran a marvellous Hardwicke race to win by the highest distance margin of the week, a stunning seven lengths.

Telescope puts distance between the field. Image credit @Channel$Racing

Telescope puts distance between the field. Image credit @Channel$Racing

The Queen Alex is the longest race in the British flat calendar with a distance of 2m 5 ½ f. This stamina sapping course claimed the life of Tiger Cliff this year as he collapsed with a heart attack after the finish. In virtually the same place on the course under the same circumstances Thomas Chippendale was a casualty last year.

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