Royal Ascot begins with a bang, as ever, with three of the first four races at the festival being Group 1 affairs. The first of those comes in our opener as the best older milers in the game line up for the Queen Anne Stakes.
The first Queen Anne Stakes ran in 1840. In that time some superstars of the turf have graced the winning enclosure such as Ribchester, Frankel, Canford Cliffs and Goldikova in more recent times.
Next Race: TBD
The next renewal of this race has not been scheduled yet. We will update this once the schedule has been released for next season. The race info, trends and tips shown below will be updated for the next renewal once the final declarations have been made.
Last Run: 16th June 2020
- Winner: Circus Maximus
- SP: 4/1
- Trainer: Aidan O'Brien
- Jockey: Ryan Moore
Set to be run on good ground in this year’s renewal, this one mile Group 1 flat contest offers a total of £250,000 in prize money.
|Going||Distance||Grade||Prize Money||Runners||EW Terms|
|Good||1m||Group 1||£250,000||16||1/5 1-4|
Queen Anne Stakes Betting Tips
Note: The following tips are from 2020. Tips for the next renewal will be added once the final declarations have been made.
We have witnessed a couple of surprise results in this race the last two years but upsets are far from a common feature. Prior to the last two, 10 consecutive Queen Anne champions came from the top three in the betting.
|Circus Maximus||9/2||118||Aidan O'Brien||Ryan Moore|
|Terebellum||4/1||110||John Gosden||Frankie Dettori|
|Fox Chairman||8/1||110||Andrew Balding||Silvestre De Sousa|
|Mustashry||10/1||121||Sir Michael Stoute||Dane O'Neill|
|Duke Of Hazzard||10/1||115||Paul & Oliver Cole||P J McDonald|
Circus Maximus (9/2)
While we cannot rule out a shock result, we are confident that Circus Maximum can justify his fairly short price tag. A major reason behind our support is the colt’s regularly impressive one mile displays last season. Second in the Sussex Stakes and winner in both the St James’s Palace Stakes and Prix du Moulin de Longchamp, this is one horse that demands respect.
He was not quite up to the same lofty standards when racing in the Breeders’ Cup Mile in November but this was always going to be a tough ask. Many punters had faith but horses from this side of the Atlantic rarely fare well in America, in part because of the unfamiliarity with dirt courses. A return to grass should see the bay colt reclaim all his former swagger especially with ground conditions looking like being ideal for him. Some of the four year old’s best showings have come on good ground and he will savour a well-run race.
Terebellum is the only one of our main contenders who has the benefit of a recent run. It was an impressive seasonal return too during the Dahlia Fillies’ Stakes at Newmarket. The margin of victory was not huge but never did the win look in any danger whatsoever. Having impressed so much that day, among Group 2 company, a place as a second favourite seems an entirely justified one.
The importance of her recent run and subsequent victory cannot be understated either. A total of 10 of the last 12 Queen Anne Stakes winners made an appearance within a month of Royal Ascot. While this is a very positive sign for John Gosden, there are big question marks over whether a one-mile trip will suit the filly. The only distance she knows is 10 furlongs having competed exclusively across this trip during five career starts. Over the last 12 years, this race has only witnessed one winner who had not previously made at least four starts over the mile distance. Perhaps the gamble will pay off but we do not fancy the risk at odds of just 4/1.
Fox Chairman (8/1)
It will be interesting to see how the highly-rated Fox Chairman fares here with this his first start in 11 months. Last season the Kingman colt made a decent name for himself, managing runner-up in Hampton Court Stakes and then winning the Stevenson Stakes at Newbury. Prior to this, Fox Chairman faced Circus Maximus at Chester with Tuesday’s favourite finishing over three lengths clear. It would be jumping the gun to think, based on this, that there is a big difference in class between the two though. Chester is an incredibly tricky course and on that day Andrew Balding’s horse got himself trapped by the inside rail.
So, does our 8/1 shot have any hope of enacting revenge of maximus proportions this Tuesday? It would not be the biggest shock of Royal Ascot but we do not think it is very likely. While a return to one mile might work for the four year old, the going at Ascot might be too quick for his taste. He has never previously competed on good going before and the reduced focus on stamina will be to his detriment.
Three years older than all of the major players in this race, Mustashry will need to roll back the years to win here. Four years old has been the prime age for Queen Anne contenders although five year olds have also fared reasonably well. Winners older than this, such as Lord Glitters 12 months ago, on the other hand, are something of a rarity. Witnessing last year’s shock victory was Mustashry himself who mustered a credible seventh place finish in a field of 16. He might have done a little better too had he not been bumped entering the final furlong, or had he not lost his left-fore shoe.
Luck was firmly against Sir Michael’s Stoute horse last year so who is to say he cannot be the latest exception to the age trends in this race? After all, he has won at Ascot before and one mile is a distance he is incredibly familiar with. It’s not as though he’s shown much sign of aging either his current official rating of 121 the highest he’s ever been. Regular jockey Jim Crowley has opted to ride with Mohaather (14/1) instead but perhaps this could be a decision he regrets. Mustashry is still a very capable horse and we would not be remotely surprised if he secures a top four finish.
Duke of Hazzard (10/1)
The way Duke of Hazzard finished last season means there will be plenty of punters keeping a keen eye on him. Having initially gone four races without a win, the then three year old finished with a flurry of victories including two at Group standard. A run of three consecutive one-mile wins, each better than the last, means that it is reasonable to expect further improvements.
It is more than a coincidence that the good run of form coincided with the wearing of blinkers. Some horses need the headwear to stay focussed and so far, it has worked wonders for the bay colt. The blinkers remain here but Paul and Oliver Cole have also opted to roll out a tongue tie for the first time. In a race, which could easily be settled by small margins, decision like this cannot be overlooked. Much like Mustashry, he is a horse who represents good value at 10/1 and another we can fully see grabbing a placed finish this Tuesday.
Queen Anne Stakes Winners
|2020||Circus Maximus||4/1||Aidan O'Brien||Ryan Moore|
|2019||Lord Glitters||14/1||David O'Meara||Daniel Tudhope|
|2018||Accidental Agent||33/1||Eve Johnson Houghton||Charles Bishop|
|2017||Ribchester||11/10||Richard Fahey||William Buick|
|2016||Tepin||11/2||Mark Casse||Julien Leparoux|
|2015||Solow||11/8||Freddy Head||Maxime Guyon|
|2014||Toronado||4/5||Richard Hannon||Richard Hughes|
|2013||Declaration Of War||15/2||Aidan O'Brien||Joseph O'Brien|
|2012||Frankel||1/10||Sir Henry Cecil||Tom Queally|
|2011||Canford Cliffs||11/8||Richard Hannon Snr.||Richard Hughes|
About the Queen Anne Stakes
Although initially called the Trial Stakes, you’ll not find anyone who still refers to the Queen Anne Stakes by its original title as it was 1930 when it changed its name. It did so to honour the former monarch who is the founder of Ascot Racecourse itself. At this time, the contest was for three-year-olds and above but the minimum age increased to four in 2003. The change in eligibility also coincided with reclassification as the one mile contest enjoyed promotion to Group 1.
The boost in grading has seen the Queen Anne quickly establish itself as one of the highlight events on the first day of Royal Ascot. With a fitting purse to boot, it also stands as one of the leading one mile contests in the country and is the second big one of the season following the Lockinge Stakes.
SIX IS TOO LATE
Celebrating a sixth birthday means little change in the life of a human but for horses, it virtually signals the end of any hopes of winning this race. There has only been one winner older than five years of age since 1976, with Lord Glitters in 2019 the horse who put an end to the drought, despite a long list of runners attempting to do so in the intervening years.
Realistically speaking, horses now only have two chances to claim glory in this race since the minimum age increased to four in 2003. Double winners have grown extinct as a result with it well over a century since a horse claimed back to back Queen Anne victories. That horse was Dean Swift in 1906 and 1907.
WATCH OUT FOR THE GIRLS
It the males who predominately contest the Queen Anne but fillies and mares have been known to partake in the one mile contest. Those that do enjoy a three pound allowance over the rest of the field and twice in recent years has this made a telling difference. The slight weight advantage helped two mares, Tepin and Goldikova, secure victory by a length’s margin in 2016 and 2010 respectively. Having seen these two talented female horses battle to glory, it is wise to remember that the boys don’t always have it their own way.
BROOK NO SHORTAGE OF LUCK
The childhood rhyme tells us that first’s the worst and second’s the best but this was not the case in the 1974 edition of the Queen Anne Stakes. The winner etched into the history books for the race was Brook, despite being the fourth horse past the post at Ascot. The three names that finished before him, Confusion, Gloss and Royal Prerogative, all faced disqualification for a variety of reasons. It was rather fitting that this trio in particular were denied victory as the royal stewards’ prerogative to change the results caused much confusion and rather took the gloss off the race.
LOCKINGE RESULT NOT KEY
Run over the same distance but earlier on in the season, the Group 1 Lockinge Stakes can sometimes act as a useful guide for how this race might pan out. Many horses do compete in both top class events but winning the pair of them in the same summer is far from a regular occurrence. Ribchester (2017), Frankel (2012) and Canford Cliffs (2011) have all pulled off the double but only one horse managed the feat in the twenty years between 1990 and 2010 and that was Medicean in 2001. So, while you’ll want to pay some attention to the Lockinge Stakes result, don’t bank on their being a repeat outcome. In 2020 the Lockinge Stakes was abandoned so no horses competed in both races.