We’re posting Royal Ascot 2020 tips for every race at this year’s five-day spectacular and have seven selections from a superb card on Saturday.
The St James’s Palace Stakes is one of the feature events on the final day of this great festival and here are some pointers from PA Media’s Anita Chambers.
1.15 Sands Of Time @ 12/1
Trained by Mark Johnston, she made pretty much all the running on her racecourse bow at Lingfield nearly two weeks ago, claiming a five-length success with the minimum of fuss.
Her dam, Starlit Sands, finished a narrow second in this event back in 2007 and Sands Of Time can now right the family record.
1.50 Creative Force @ 6/1
Impressed on his debut at Newmarket and might be the one in the Coventry Stakes.
He was not hard ridden to win by a length and a quarter that day – and he clearly knew his job, because he was smartly away and travelled very nicely.
2.25 Sharing @ 6/1
Might offer a bit of value in the Coronation Stakes, although any drying of the ground would certainly help the American-trained challenger.
Winner of the Breeders’ Cup Juvenile Fillies’ Turf last year, Sharing, pictured, won her prep event for this race in decent style last month and has had the benefit of a bit more recovery time from her debut than some of her rivals here.
Graham Motion has previously knocked on the door with Miss Temple City at Ascot, and this filly looks far superior at this stage of her career.
3.00 Wichita @ 2/1
Can confirm 2000 Guineas form with Pinatubo and claim a first Group One prize in the St James’s Palace Stakes, one of the feature events on a bumper final day.
Neither colt was able to top Kameko at Newmarket two weeks ago, but Wichita got closest of all, finishing just a neck behind the Derby-bound winner.
In doing so he reversed his juvenile form with hot favourite Pinatubo, who had beaten him four and three-quarter lengths in the Dewhurst but was a length adrift in the Classic.
There were no excuses for Pinatubo’s defeat and it looked as though Wichita just saw out the mile better, with Aidan O’Brien’s charge a possibility to get further in due course too.
Both colts should surely be sharper for the run – and while turning out again two weeks later is not ideal, O’Brien has shown he can get his runners back on top form quickly, not least with last year’s race winner Circus Maximus.
New challengers await now, but preference is for the proven Classic form.
3.35 Sceptical @ 5/2
Is the pick in the Diamond Jubilee Stakes.
He has proved an ultra-shrewd purchase for Denis Hogan, winning three times on the all weather before making a seamless switch to the turf at Naas just under two weeks ago.
The four-year-old is the highest-rated sprinter in Ireland and he looked a class act when easily accounting for his rivals in the five-and-a-half-furlong Woodlands Stakes, quickly seizing control before being eased right down.
This Group One obviously presents a much tougher task, but Sceptical is clearly on the up and will have the assistance of Frankie Dettori this time too.
4.10 Summerghand @ 11/1
Ran a cracking trial for the Wokingham Handicap when second at Newmarket earlier this month and he can improve on last year’s fifth place.
Beaten just three lengths by Cape Byron in 2019, Summerghand should be in the mix again off just a 1lb higher mark.
4.40 Who Dares Wins @ 11/4
Can lift the Queen Alexandra Stakes, the closing event of the 2020 meeting.
He hit new heights over the last jumps season, claiming a Grade Two chase success, and a repeat of his Northumberland Plate win of last year would put him thereabouts.
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