Bookies prepare for avalanche of bets on Royal Ascot
Top horses expected to draw the crowds
UK bookmakers are preparing for an avalanche of accumulator bets at the Royal Ascot meeting which begins on Tuesday.
On the first day of the five-day meeting, punters are predicted to swoop on the treble involving Baaeed (Queen Anne Stakes), Coroebus (St James Palace Stakes) and American raider Golden Pal in the King’s Stand Stakes.
Corals’s Dave Stevens said: “Short-priced accumulators tend to be the trend with festival days. We see it at Cheltenham and Royal Ascot because of the nature of the grade 1s.
“It has to be said it’s been a brilliant start to the flat season with good horses everywhere,” he said.
Paddy Power’s Paul Binfield said: “Baaeed, Coroebus and Golden Pal will be popular on the day with punters throwing in a horse like Blackbeard. We’ll see plenty of accumulators with these three and whatever Frankie [Dettori] is riding on day one. It will give the odds boffins real headaches.”
William Haggas’s unbeaten seven-time winner Baaeed is 2-7 favourite for the Queen Anne Stakes, and is predicted to show his rivals a clean pair of heels.
American trainer Wesley Ward says Golden Pal is “the fastest horse I’ve ever trained”. That resulted in his odds being clipped for the King’s Stand Stakes.
However, it is unlikely to be a walk in the park for Ward’s speedster as Australia are here this year with a well-performed sprinter in Nature Strip.
Three-times winning Melbourne Cup jockey Glen Boss has no doubt that trainer Chris Waller’s sprinter will be too speedy for his rivals. “Nature Strip’s best is too good. It’s as simple as that. He has been the most dominant world-class sprinter for the past two years and we have the best sprinters in the world.
“He will be very strong at the end of the race up the hill. I reckon he’s a great seven-furlong horse so that will suit him right down to the ground,” said Boss.
In the Coventry Stakes, Irish trainer Aidan O’Brien has three from his stable entered which sets Ryan Moore a poser. The trio are Age Of Kings, Blackbeard and Little Big Bear.
The Ascot Stakes sees two big names in the steeplechasing game, Willie Mullins and Gordon Elliot, possibly challenging with Bring On The Night and Pied Piper.
Then on Thursday champion stayer Stradivarius will be out to emulate Yeats’s feat by winning the Ascot Gold Cup for the fourth time.
The eight-year-old won May’s Yorkshire Cup at York to take his tally of wins to 20 — seven at the top level — and prize money earnings of over £3.3m.
Trainer John Gosden told reporters: “He’s an old pro now. He had bad luck with the ground last year and a couple of tactical issues. But if he gets his ground, which it looks as if he may, he’s up to running a massive race in the Gold Cup.
“It was always the plan to run at Ascot and then Goodwood. We’re sticking to that. Beyond that, he’ll tell us if he’s had enough.”
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