Sky Sports Racing ambassador Hollie Doyle runs the rule over all six rides on the final day of Royal Ascot on Saturday, including her Champions Sprint hero Glen Shiel in the Diamond Jubilee.
I said before GLEN SHIEL‘s re-appearance in Ireland last month that he would come on for his first run in seven months and I couldn’t be happier with him heading into the Group 1 Diamond Jubilee Stakes (4.20) at Royal Ascot on Saturday.
I’ve been riding him in all his work since he finished fourth in the Group 3 Greenlands Stakes at The Curragh and he’s really tightened up. Glen looks every inch the sprinter these days and has been prepared to the minute by his trainer Archie Watson.
It’s well documented that his best form is on soft ground so we’ll be keeping a weather watch in the hope the forecast storms fall upon the track before Saturday afternoon.
It’s also no secret that he enjoys bowling along in front so I’ll be looking to bounce him out into a good rhythm from his good middle draw.
He just got tired in the closing stages in Ireland after such a long layoff but with that behind him should be able to see his race out as gamely as he did on Champions Day.
Mehmento has strong claims in Jersey
The Group 3 Jersey Stakes (3.05) is the perfect race for the talented three-year-old MEHMENTO, who has thrived since coming unstuck in difficult ground in the French Guineas.
He put that behind him in emphatic style in the Listed Surrey Stakes at Epsom’s Derby meeting, proving that 7f is his ideal trip.
He ran a blinder over that distance in the Group 3 Greenham Stakes at Newbury when he only just failed to hold off the smart Chindit.
Ground versatile, he won’t be inconvenienced if the rain arrives and felt great when I rode him work at Archie’s the other day.
Like Glen Shiel, he’s owned by Hambleton Racing who are loyal supporters of Archie’s yard and it’ll be lovely to see their shareholders enjoying the atmosphere on what could be another great day for them.
Trip ideal for Chesham mount
I’ve liked SWEEPING since before his debut run at Leicester so I wasn’t surprised he ran so well in a 6f maiden there last month.
He couldn’t hold off John and Thady Gosden’s smart winner Dhabab, who ran creditably in the Coventry this week, but confirmed that day he was crying out for the 7f he’ll get in the Chesham Stakes (2.30).
Sweeping is bred to stay and is ideally drawn in the middle in stall six. He’s come on for his debut run and Archie (Watson) is rightfully expecting him to take the step up in class in his stride.
Stamina no issue for Stag Horn
Another horse who would enjoy plenty of rain is Archie Watson’s grand stayer STAG HORN who takes his chance in the longest race of the meeting, the Queen Alexandra Stakes (6.10).
He stays all day as he proved when we beat The Grand Visir – second in this race last year – in the Phil Bull Trophy over 2m2f at Pontefract last autumn, and in my view still has scope for improvement.
I was pleased with his first run of the season in the Group 3 Sagaro Stakes behind Stradivarius considering he was a little fresh. He’s right in the mix with the fancied runners on ratings and some rain would certainly play to his strengths, even over this demanding 2m5.5f.
New test for Dingle in Golden Gates
The Golden Gates Handicap (5.35) is ultra-tough but is an opportunity for DINGLE to show what he’s made of over a new trip.
Richard Hannon’s colt won a nursery on the All-Weather before making a promising re-appearance over 7f at Newbury but didn’t build on that as expected at Sandown, though that may have come too soon.
He’s had time to freshen up but has to prove his stamina and remains 6lb above his winning mark.
Strong pace vital for Ambassador
I’m hoping GREAT AMBASSADOR gets a run in the Wokingham Handicap (5.00) for Ed Walker and his owners. He’s one of three reserves for the big dash.
Tom (Marquand) rode him at Newmarket last time when he was far too keen against a modest pace. They should go a stronger gallop in this 6f cavalry charge which would suit him much better.