Hollie Doyle booked to ride Lostwithiel in the Ascot Stakes (5.00) and Amtiyaz in the Copper Horse Stakes (6.10) on opening day of Royal Ascot on Tuesday; watch every race at Royal Ascot live on Sky Sports Racing, June 15-19
Sky Sports Racing ambassador Hollie Doyle will be discussing her chances every day during Royal Ascot in her exclusive blog. She begins by analysing her two rides on the opening afternoon and shares her insight into one of the day’s feature races, the St James’s Palace Stakes.
George Boughey, who has made such a remarkable start to his training career in Newmarket, has some strong chances of achieving a dream Royal Ascot winner this week, including LOSTWITHIEL – my ride in the Ascot Stakes (5.00) on the opening day.
I called into George’s Saffron House Stables last Wednesday to ride the colt and both of us were really happy with his preparation.
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Lostwithiel is an exciting young horse by Camelot who has a thorough stayer’s pedigree so should stay the demanding 2m4f. He won his novice on the All-Weather and has since run two big races in defeat over 1m6f at Nottingham and Newmarket.
I thought he showed a great attitude last time on the slowest ground he’s raced on to battle on behind Godolphin’s Global Storm – a leading fancy for the Copper Horse Stakes later in the day.
I’ve never ridden him in a race before. Rossa Ryan, who is unfortunately on the sidelines for a few weeks, has been on board for his last three starts. My aim will be to get him switched off and settled and use his cruising speed to take us through the race, and hopefully we’ll be in there with every chance on the climb to the line.
Going for gold in the Copper Horse
AMTIYAZ’S run in the Copper Horse Stakes (6.10) at Ascot on Tuesday really will be a learning curve, but that’s not to say he won’t run a big race.
John and Thady Gosden’s honest colt has only run once on turf, and that was on his second start back in September when he ran respectably in a Lingfield novice on good ground.
As he’s quite small and a good mover, I can’t see why fast conditions should be a problem and I certainly think 1m6f around Ascot will suit him.
Amtiyaz, who is owned by my boss Imad Alsagar, earned his ticket with three wins on the All-Weather at Newcastle, Wolverhampton and Kempton last winter and would have gone close in the Marathon Final on Good Friday but for a nightmare passage.
Imad will be at Ascot to watch him run. He’s very passionate about all his horses and incredibly knowledgeable, too. I’m sure that if he feels this is the right race for Amtiyaz I have to be hopeful he can outrun his big odds.
Tuesday at Royal Ascot: Tips and preview
Tips, previews and guide to Tuesday's meeting including the St James's Palace Stakes
Better ground key for Highland’s chances
I’m not riding in the St James’s Palace Stakes (4.20) but I’ll be taking a keen interest in Charlie Appleby’s HIGHLAND AVENUE, a horse I won on at Kempton back in March.
He felt like a proper horse that day so it’s no surprise to see him climb through the ranks. He always looked like winning the Listed Feilden Stakes at Newmarket on his turf debut and his second in the Listed Heron Stakes at Sandown can be marked up.
He’s a good moving horse who wouldn’t have enjoyed the soft ground that day but he still finished within half a length of the winner Mostahdaf, who is among the favourites for this Group 1. On much better ground this time, I can see Highland Avenue running a big race for Charlie and William Buick.
Hoping Dhabab proves a Chesham pointer
I’m rooting for John and Thady Gosden’s DHABAB in the big two-year-old race on the opening day, the Group 2 Coventry Stakes (3.05). I finished second to him in a 6f maiden at Leicester earlier this month and was impressed by his acceleration.
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My colt, Sweeping, made the best of his way home that day but we had to settle for second place. I was pleased enough, as it was pretty plain we’d been beaten by a smart one and my horse will appreciate further.
Archie (Watson) has him in the Listed Chesham Stakes on Saturday and there’s no doubt the extra furlong will play to his strengths. If we could go there at the weekend having finished just behind the Coventry winner we’d be entitled to feel confident of a big run.
Hoping for forecast rain on Thursday
Riding TRUESHAN in the Ascot Gold Cup is going to be so exciting and I must admit I was smiling when I saw the weather forecast for Thursday. There’s a strong chance of significant rain which could result in the easy ground he thrives on.
We need everything in our favour to beat the likes of Stradivarius and Subjectivist but Trueshan is a special horse himself when he gets his ground and Alan (King) has been delighted with him since his solid return in the Ormonde Stakes at Chester.
Soft ground is also key to Glen Shiel’s chances in Saturday’s Group 1 Diamond Jubilee Stakes, of course, and I’ll be analysing both races later in the week.