Queen Mary Stakes (Ascot) Betting Tips & Preview – Wednesday 20th June 2018

The Queen Mary Stakes is one of the races at Royal Ascot that allows the juveniles to take centre stage. It’s only run over a sprint trip but can actually prove to be a fairly stiff test because of the crowds, the weather and the age of the competitors.

Younger horses can sometimes improve very quickly but it is rare for a Queen Mary Stakes winner to come completely out of the blue. Nine of the last 10 winners had already won a race while seven of 10 had won their most recent outing. Chelsea Cloisters ticks those two boxes and Wesley Ward’s filly could provide the American trainer with another Royal Ascot win with Frankie Dettori on board.

Top Tips

Chelsea Cloisters @ 9/4

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

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Race Info

The Queen Mary Stakes is the first race on the second day of Royal Ascot. It’s a Group 2 contest run over just five furlongs and pits together some of the most exciting two-year-old fillies in training. There is a total prize fund of £110,000 up for grabs while the going is expected to be good to firm.

GoingDistanceGradePrize MoneyRunnersEW Terms
Good to Firm 5 Furlongs Group 2 £110,00 22 1/5 1-3

Recent Winners

The Queen Mary Stakes has been improved in more recent times for the number of international trainers who enter their most promising fillies in the contest. Lady Aurelia, the 2016 winner, is one of those who has kicked on to enjoy success at the very top level while it’s noticeable how many big name jockeys have claimed the prize.

YearWinnerSPTrainerJockey
2017 Heartache 5/1 Clive Cox Adam Kirby
2016 Lady Aurelia 2/1f Wesley Ward Frankie Dettori
2015 Acapulco 5/2f Wesley Ward Ryan Moore
2014 Anthem Alexander 9/4f Eddie Lynam Pat Smullen
2013 Rizeena 6/1 Clive Brittain James Doyle

Analysis: This Sprint Is Not All About Pace

There are some wonderful sprints at Royal Ascot. On paper, the Queen Mary Stakes may look like one of them given that it is run over five furlongs but this can actually prove to be something of a test of stamina as much as pace. Two-year-olds are still maturing so the jockeys must ensure their ride does not burn out by going hell for leather in the early stages. It’s no coincidence that many recent winners were sired by stallions with winning form over longer than sprint trips (up to a mile) so that’s the key element to look for when picking a potential winner.

Chelsea Cloisters Looks A Cut Above The Rest

The early favourite for the Queen Mary Stakes is Wesley Ward’s Chelsea Cloisters. Like several recent winners, Chelsea Cloisters has made just one competitive racecourse appearance prior to her trip to Ascot. That may scare a few punters given that many horses have been put off by the big crowds and the noise of Royal Ascot before but Ward knows exactly what it takes to get prepare a juvenile for this race.

Ward has won three of the last nine editions of the Queen Mary Stakes including two of the last three. He also trained Happy Like A Fool who came second when a well backed favourite in last year’s race. Punters and bookies alike know all about Ward’s impressive record is in this race so his horses are always well backed. However, you can still get 9/4 on Chelsea Cloisters.

She made all in a race she was expected to win at Keeneland and you can be sure Ward has done plenty of work with her away from the course. Chelsea Cloisters has a great chance on Wednesday.

So Perfect the Favourite’s Most Likely Challenger

Scat Daddy is one of those stallions whose progeny have gone on to win the Queen Mary Stakes and another one of his offspring, So Perfect, looks to have a genuine chance of competing with the favourite on Wednesday.

Unlike many Aidan O’Brien juveniles, So Perfect wasted no time and broke her maiden duck at the first time of asking. The first thing that strikes you about So Perfect is her size. As well as being big, she’s also incredibly powerful. The kick for home that So Perfect possesses means she can be held back a little before getting up to full speed and it’s that finishing power that will most worry Chelsea Cloisters’ connections so back her at 7/1.

Final Verdict: Chelsea Cloisters to Win

Wesley Ward is very popular among racegoers at Royal Ascot and there is no doubt that the meeting has been improved since he started seriously targeting a number of key races. The Queen Mary Stakes is one of those races to benefit from the Ward factor and he has a very good chance to win this for the fourth time in 10 years with the hugely promising Chelsea Cloisters.

This does look a competitive field with several who should be there or thereabouts come the closing stages. The power and pace of So Perfect just about gives her the edge for those looking for a value each way bet.

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