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Ascot Stakes Handicap

17:00 Royal Ascot

2021-06-15

Winner: £35100

Runners: 19

Going:Good To Firm

No. of hurdles:

Distance: 2m3f210yy

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The Ascot Stakes is a handicap run over 2m4f. It takes place at 17:00 on Tuesday 15th June, which is the first day of Royal Ascot 2021. View the runners here, and also make sure to check out the odds and tips on offer for this race.

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20(13)
1000-0
silk
Dalton Highway

-

J: Colin Keane
T: D K Weld
8
127
91
109
No shortage of action and rather mixed form but he's well worth another go beyond 2m1f (sole attempt when 18th in last year's Cesarewitch) and represents the same top Irish trainer who won this year's Chester Cup; won on good to firm in 2019.
16(18)
6130-0
silk
Mancini

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J: Richard Kingscote
T: Ian Williams
7
129
93
110
Often front-runs; ran poorly when visored last two starts, so reverts to the cheekpieces of previous three outings (twice ran very well); ninth in this race last year (just before headgear was enlisted) and seventh in 2019, leaving stamina unproven but he's competitively handicapped if back on song.
14(5)
190-74
silk
Coeur De Lion

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J: Thore Hammer Hansen
T: Alan King
8
130
94
109
Fifth in this race in 2019 and won it in 2020; he's not handicapped out of it today (off 3lb higher than last year) and returned to form when strong-finishing fourth in the Chester Cup on latest outing, so has major each-way claims again under regular rider Thore Hammer Hansen.
5(20)
6213-9
silk
Solo Saxophone

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J: Paul Mulrennan
T: Ben Haslam
7
133
97
110
Four wins when back to Flat last year but, although creditable, his third of six at this track last July was an occasion when his progress stalled; never dangerous at Newbury two months ago on sole start this term; well worth a go at marathon trip but may be best on softer than good.
2(12)
31-456
silk
Island Brave

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J: Callum Hutchinson
T: Heather Main
7
136
100
107
Usually held up in rear these days; his only two attempts at marathon trips were last term over 2m2f in Doncaster Cup and Cesarewitch, both of which can be excused; does not look the best handicapped, hence presumably his 7lb claimer being booked, but coming from last to first for 2m win here (good to firm; 7lb higher today) last August gives some hope.
6(3)
1600-0
silk
Reshoun

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J: William Buick
T: Ian Williams
7
133
97
111
Career-best form to win at Newbury (2m, good) last July in first-time visor; out of form afterwards last term and although he finished a lot closer in the Chester Cup on reappearance, which was an upturn in form, he finished only 11th; not proven beyond 2m but only 1lb above that last winning mark; trainer won this race two years ago.
4(7)
040/0/
silk
Lethal Steps

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J: Jamie Spencer
T: Mrs Denise Foster
6
135
99
19th (Britannia) and 11th (Duke Of Edinburgh) at this meeting in 2018 and 2019; fairly useful hurdler (stays 2m6f) but also an outsider when well held at Cheltenham (2m1f) in March 2020 after wind surgery; last of seven over hurdles 17 days ago on his only start since, so he has lots to prove.
3(16)
153360
silk
Lucky Deal

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J: Franny Norton
T: Mark Johnston
6
136
100
110
Never dangerous in his two runs at this meeting, latterly when fourth in 2019 Queen Alexandra (2m5f); had a consistent AW campaign but underperformed back on turf last two outings; return to fast ground should boost his chance and first-time headgear is an interesting move.
8(10)
29740/
silk
M C Muldoon

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J: Ryan Moore
T: W P Mullins
6
132
96
112
Did not prove he stayed beyond 1m2f as useful 3yo for Peter Chapple-Hyam but there is stamina in the family; missed 2019 and virtually all of 2020, since which he has shown fairly useful form in 2m novice hurdles, staying on well last time; hooded on last three starts; his trainer's record in this race (mostly with Ryan Moore) could hardly be more respected.
18(19)
1820-3
silk
Just Hubert

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J: Daniel Tudhope
T: William Muir & Chris Grassick
5
128
92
111
Strong late on to pip Rochester House at Glorious Goodwood (2m4f, good) last July off 4lb lower; reappearance at Haydock (2m, heavy) last month, passing seven of his nine rivals up the straight, suggested he's better still this term; has won twice on good to firm; drawn wide but one to consider.
17(17)
4-4038
silk
Rochester House

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J: Silvestre De Sousa
T: Mark Johnston
5
129
93
110
2020 efforts include front-running, neck second to Just Hubert over 2m4f at Glorious Goodwood and a 2m win here, where he earlier came from the back for fifth of 19 in this race (had widest draw); ran respectably back on turf the last twice and has each-way claims but drawn wide again.
10(4)
2/3-15
silk
Elysian Flame

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J: Ben Curtis
T: Michael & David Easterby
5
132
96
108
Battled his way to a career best when back on the Flat to win good race at Newbury (2m, good; unraced on firmer) in April, the front two 6l clear of Rochester House; badly hampered at the start in Chester Plate and ran on well for fifth, so he's still in fine form and one to take seriously.
13(8)
9/6D63-
silk
Royal Illusion

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J: Tom Marquand
T: W P Mullins
9
130
94
107
Won a maiden hurdle in March but weakening quickly when she fell at the final flight in Grade 1 mares' novice in April; impressive winner of the 2m Irish Cesarewitch in 2019 and although the handicapper appeared to have her measure last year, she ran with credit; for Willie Mullins, she has to be considered seriously.
19(11)
421-24
silk
Golden Rules

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J: Frankie Dettori
T: John & Thady Gosden
4
128
93
110
Just five starts, looking one for stamina tests from early stage; sole win came at 1-7 on AW; beaten this season in his two handicaps (1m6f) but that form demands respect and he got within a nose on the first occasion; tends to hang under pressure; unraced on good or firmer; bit to prove but a fascinating candidate and Frankie Dettori rides him for the first time.
15(15)
31-224
silk
Postileo

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J: Andrea Atzeni
T: Roger Varian
4
129
94
113
Only seven races, third on good to firm last July on way up the ladder; strong-finishing second in the Chester Plate (2m2f, good to soft) when front-running winner had gone way beyond recall; fourth at Haydock (admittedly on heavy) halted his momentum but he's shortlisted on the Chester evidence.
7(9)
24122/
silk
Rayapour

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J: Adam Kirby
T: W P Mullins
5
133
97
111
Progressive kept to 1m4f (looked sure to stay further) by Alain De Royer-Dupre in France in summer 2019, blinkered on final start (cheekpieces today); sole run since when front-running third at 4-6 in a 2m3f maiden hurdle last month; unraced on firmer than good; Willie Mullins had no runner in this race last year but won in 2012, 2015, 2017 and 2018, plus runner-up in 2019.
1(6)
21/21-
silk
Cape Gentleman

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J: Rachael Blackmore
T: Emmet Mullins
5
136
100
102
Has run in only one Flat handicap, when winning the Irish Cesarewitch at the Curragh (2m, soft) last October in clearcut style, always prominent; took Grade 2 novice hurdle at Kempton (good; unraced on firmer) in February and creditable ninth in 2m4f handicap hurdle at Punchestown in April; major work to do off this mark but he's not fully exposed on Flat and his trainer has made a huge splash when raiding British handicaps over jumps; top jumps jockey Rachael Blackmore bids for yet another high-profile win.
NR(2)
112-65
silk
Trumpet Man

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T: Mark Johnston
4
132
97
112
2m hat-trick under Franny Norton last autumn; beaten off this mark on all three starts since but ran well, not getting the best of runs late on when fifth last time in the 2m2f Chester Cup; unraced on firmer than good; otherwise looks set to do better still over long distances.
12(1)
31-12
silk
Untold Story

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J: Oisin Murphy
T: Saeed bin Suroor
4
130
95
108
Third on good ground on debut last June and won 1m4f novices on the AW in December and April; raced freely early on handicap debut at Newmarket (1m4f, soft) last month but stayed on for a good second of six; while looking sure to stay beyond 1m4f, this is an extra 1m; one close relation, Winning Story, was smart over 2m.
11(14)
1-122
silk
Lostwithiel

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J: Hollie Doyle
T: George Boughey
4
131
96
111
Only four starts and hit a useful standard very quickly, albeit finding one too good in his 1m6f handicaps at Nottingham (good to firm) and Newmarket (soft); inexperienced and unexposed.

RACING POST TIP

circle_v2
silk
Trumpet Man
Willie Mullins has been the first person to turn to in this race in recent years, usually with his first string ridden by Ryan Moore, so M C Muldoon may edge Rayapour among the trainer's three runners this time round. A batch of strong candidates ran in the Chester Cup and Chester Plate, including Coeur De Lion who bids for a repeat Ascot Stakes win. Elysian Flame boosted his reputation in the Plate, while Postileo would probably have got the vote today but for his run on heavy ground since. However, another chance is given to the Chester Cup fifth TRUMPET MAN who got rather messed around in the closing stages and still has more to offer with this sort of test. He gets the vote ahead of Coeur De Lion and Postileo, although the Mullins squad is not at all comfortably dismissed and Golden Rules is a most intriguing dark horse for John Gosden and Frankie Dettori.

Verdict

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Past 10 Winners

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Key race stats

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