Wednesday, July 12

GUEST POST: King George VI Weekend Tips

The King George VI Weekend at Ascot is one of the biggest meetings of the year on the flat calendar in the UK and the prestigious titular Group One contest, run over 1m4f, looks set to attract another cracking field for the race. There is also the ultra-competitive Gigaset International Handicap to look forward to. Here are the best tips for the meeting.

King George VI Stakes

The top of the betting for the 2017 King George VI Stakes is dominated by last year’s winner, Highland Reel, who has already had a fantastic campaign this season with victories coming at Epsom in the Coronation Cup and at Royal Ascot where he came out on top in the Prince of Wales’s Stakes. Aidan O’Brien’s colt has flourished over the last 12 months and is 6/4 to become only the third horse in history to win this race twice.




Credit: Irish Champions Wknd via Twitter

As much as Highland Reel does look the most likely winner of the race, he is worth opposing at the prices as he has had a busy campaign over the last four weeks. The entries at the moment include recent Eclipse winner Ulysses, who may step back up in trip, while Oaks heroine Enable could tackle the older generation for the first time in her career.
The preference, however, is for Idaho, who is a full-brother to Highland Reel. The Irish horse comes into the race on the back of one of the biggest wins of his career with victory in the Group Two Hardwicke Stakes at Royal Ascot. Under the hands of Seamie Heffernan, the four-year-old tracked the leaders at the Royal meeting before chasing them down inside the final two furlongs. At 8/1 in the horse racing betting, he looks fantastic value to scoop another price at his favourite racecourse.

Gigaset International Handicap




Credit: Chester Racecourse via Twitter

Fastnet Tempest will miss the Bunbury Cup at Newmarket early this month to instead feature at Ascot for the Gigaset International Stakes, where he will be the horse they all have to beat in this competitive handicap race. The William Haggas-trained runner won the Victoria Cup at the same course back in May, landing a gamble in the big runner field over 7f. The four-year-old then continued his excellent form at Chester where he justified going off as the odds-on favourite for a 0-145 handicap. Haggas’ runner can be backed at 7/1 for the race at Ascot, where he is likely to be a lot shorter in the betting come the day of the race.


The dangers to the favourite include Tashweeq, who was third in the Royal Hunt Cup, while the Godolphin-owned Steady Pace was second in the Wokingham at the Royal meeting. Fastnet Tempest looks to have more in hand, though, and if he improves again at Ascot, it is hard to see him being out of the placings.


The King George meeting at Ascot takes place on July 29 this year and will be broadcast live on ITV1 if you can’t make it to the racecourse.
 
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