SILVESTRE DE SOUSA: Royal Ascot Saturday

It’s been one of those weeks so far. Bangkok ran an absolute cracker to finish second to Japan in the King Edward, my fourth second of the week! That was a huge step up from his run in the Derby and he has made up about 15 lengths up on Japan who is a good horse.

Anyway, we will try again on the last day of the meeting and I’m the only one hoping that when I open the curtains in the morning that the bad weather has returned! Most of my mounts are desperate for soft ground and conditions are drying out too fast.

I will drive to Ascot again in the morning and stay near Heathrow after racing as I’m jetting off to Italy on Sunday to ride King Power for Andrew Balding in the Italian Oaks…



SUN POWER 2.30pm Chesham Stakes

This is a big step up for Sun Power having won over six furlongs at Wolverhampton earlier in the month. This requires a lot more though and he will have to improve considerably to trouble the leading fancies here. Aidan O’Brien holds all the cards and his Lope Y Fernandez is reportedly well above average. He will need to be though if he is to beat Godolphin’s Pinatubo who looked really good at Epsom last time.

HAPPY POWER 3.05pm Jersey Stakes

My mount Happy Power won well at York last week but is the first of mine that could have done with softer ground. He has impressed with plenty of cut and even though he has won on good ground, I’d like the rain to come back for him. It looks a really competitive race as you might expect, but the one we have to beat is Godolphin’s Space Blues who looks a really exciting type.

MORANDO 3.40pm Hardwicke Stakes

As mentioned before, I just wish this race had been run on Wednesday when the rain was at its worst. Morando showed at Chester what he can do when the mud is flying but was well beaten on a sounder surface at Epsom last time. With the likes of Defoe, Masar, Southern France and Lah Ti Dar, to name just four, I have my work cut out. The weather looks to be set fair so the ground will probably be too lively for him.

DONJUAN TRIUMPHANT 4.20pm Diamond Jubilee Stakes

Without repeating myself, it’s the same story as with Morando as this horse handles the worst type of ground. In fact, the worse the going, the better his chances. Looking up at the skies, there is too much sunshine and not enough rain now for him to be seen at his best, but we will give it a go. It is interesting that Blue Point takes his chance after Tuesday’s King’s Stand win and he will be really hard to beat if in the same form. He is the best sprinter around and will be hard to stop.

STONE OF DESTINY 5.00pm Wokingham Stakes

A massive field for the Wokingham where I ride Stone Of Destiny for Andrew Balding. He hasn’t been in great heart of late and we are hoping that a return to Royal Ascot will spark him back to life. He was fourth in last season’s Commonwealth Cup and if he can reproduce those efforts, he will be bang in the mix here. Let’s hope the sight of top hats and tails can rejuvenate him. Cape Byron won nicely here last time and looks the one to beat.

CLEONTE 5.35pm Queen Alexandra Stakes

My best chance of a winner on the final day is probably Cleonte in the last race of the meeting. He hated the ground in the Chester Cup last time and is the only one of my rides today who really wants a sound surface. He is a good stayer who ran well here behind Dee Ex Bee who was second in the Gold Cup. I am hoping he will go very close.

Good luck


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