Prince Of Wales’s Stakes (Ascot) Betting Tips & Preview – Wednesday 20th June 2018

Just the one Group 1 contest on day two at Royal Ascot, but it’s a good one. Purely in terms of the prize money on offer, the Prince Of Wales’s Stakes is in fact the biggest race of the week. Won by superstars such as Dubai Millennium, Ouija Board and Highland Reel, this is one contest which rarely disappoints.

The market has generally proved to be a pretty good guide here, with four favourites coming home in front in the past decade and only one winner at double figure odds. Overall the jolly looks like being very tough to beat this year.

Top Tips

Cracksman to win @ 8/13

Odds correct at time of writing but may have changed since. Check site for latest prices.

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Race Info

1m2f is the trip for this Group 1 contest. Set to be run on good to firm going this year, the race offers £750,000 in total prize money.

GoingDistanceGradePrize MoneyRunnersEW Terms
Good to Firm 1m2f Group 1 £750,000 7 Runners 1/4 1-2

Recent Winners

Whilst this event is open to all runners aged four and older, only once in the past 22 renewals has the winner been older than five. The four year olds have led the way over this period with 13 wins.

Aidan O’Brien has won this three times in the past 10 years, suggesting his sole entry Cliffs Of Moher is perhaps not one to be underestimated.

YearWinnerSPTrainerJockey
2017 Highland Reel 9/4 Aidan O’Brien Ryan Moore
2016 My Dream Boat 16/1 Clive Cox Adam Kirby
2015 Free Eagle 5/2 Dermot Weld Pat Smullen
2014 The Fugue 11/2 John Gosden William Buick
2013 Al Kazeem 11/4 Roger Charlton James Doyle

Analysis: Gosden’s Crack Looks So Easy To Back

Just seven go to post this year despite the valuable prize on offer. Cracksman will likely be the banker of the meeting for many and seems likely to be the shortest priced favourite of the week.

This often serves up a real thriller, with three of the past five editions being decided by a neck or less. However, if the market leader delivers anything like his best it may not be so close this time around.

Crack To Bounce Back To Best

The one they all have to beat is the top rated three year old in Europe last season, Cracksman. The fact that he earned the rating which afforded him such an accolade over this very course and distance makes him look all the more formidable here. 8lbs clear of the next best in the field on ratings, and seven lengths too good for the second favourite when they last met, Frankel’s most talented son looks like taking an awful lot of beating.

You can look at his recent Coronation Cup win in one of two ways. Either he was seriously disappointing in only beating Salouen by a head, or he did well to reel him in at all on a track which doesn’t suit and having looked to have a mountain to climb headed into the final furlong.

Does Hawk Fit The Bill?

Next best in the race according to the official handicapper is the Charlie Appleby runner, Hawkbill. This son of Kitten’s Joy boasts a decent strike rate over his career having won 10 of his 21 starts to date, with two of those victories having come in Group 1 company, including in the 2016 Coral-Eclipse over this trip. His three length verdict over Poet’s Word in the Sheema Classic would bring him into the mix here, certainly from a place perspective. His effort last time out in the Coronation Cup however was abysmal, trailing home 25 lengths in arrears on ground which ought to have suited. Connections reach for the first time blinkers as he bids to bounce back.

Poet To Reverse Form

If for whatever reason Cracksman does disappoint, the horse who looks best placed to take advantage is the Sir Michael Stoute runner, Poet’s Word. This one has been knocking on the door at the highest level, having finished second in the Sheema Classic and both the English and Irish Champion Stakes last season. A good winner of the Group 3 Brigadier Gerard Stakes over this trip at Sandown last time, he’s a solid performer who can usually be relied upon to run his race. He does have seven lengths to find with the favourite but being a perfect two from two on good to firm, he at least looks set to get his ground.

Final Verdict: Cracksman to win

With only the seven runners going to post this isn’t the most attractive race from an each way perspective. Overall we will be keeping things simple and backing the favourite to stamp his class on proceedings.

Cracksman’s possibly sub-par run at Epsom last time out may give him a slight question to answer here, but then many of those in opposition have even bigger doubts surrounding their current from. Hawkbill and Eminent in particular ran abysmally last time out. Poet’s Word looks the most realistic danger, but Cracksman thumped him here in the Champion Stakes last season and can do so again.

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