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08 Jun 17 06:52
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Date Joined: 12 Jul 07
| Topic/replies: 4,779 | Blogger: liberator of the oppressed's blog
Anybody close to the action or from over the pond who might like to comment? Which is the shoo in this year?
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Report Jb23 June 8, 2017 10:25 AM BST
I know that Fairyland is very highly thought of to beat that Harrington thing (Cant remember the name!)
Report joevalue147 June 8, 2017 1:04 PM BST
I'd hold fire for the time being until we get a clear indication on what the weather will be like.  Their a million if this weather keeps up.
Report Notsofastmyfriend June 8, 2017 5:17 PM BST
Fairyland couldn't travel (warts in mouth) hoping to fly out next week.
Report J.D.Salinger June 8, 2017 8:17 PM BST
In the article from Blood Horse magazine below, Ward is very sweet on a 2 year old filly he trains called Happy Like A Fool, which he's aiming at the Queen Mary. He described her last piece of work before being shipped over to Ascot as "monstrous". Despite the obvious hyperbole, you can't get away from how much Ward rates his filly. She's already clear 3/1 favourite for the Queen Mary.

The article highlights all of Wards other runners, how their last "timed" piece of work went, and which races he has in mind for them.

http://www.bloodhorse.com/horse-racing/articles/221930/ward-contingent-set-for-royal-ascot-invasion.

According to Ward, Lady Aurelia is coming along nicely. Last year's runaway Queen Mary winner is being aimed at this year's King Stand stakes, a wise decision I think after she noticeably didn't stay in last year's Cheveley Park.

Below is video of her prep race earlier this season at Keeneland, where she easily disposed of older mares giving weight under hands and heels despite being forced 5 wide at the top of the straight. Johnny V talks a little bit about the filly in a short interview just after the race.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=U0jBQjADMXE
Report liberator of the oppressed June 9, 2017 7:15 AM BST
Thanks JD. There is a geezer who writes in the RP supplement and one year might have been last year he mentioned Wesley's best one after speaking with the trainer might well have been Lady Aurelia anyway whatever it was could have pulled a tank or two and still won easily. Was a girl horse dressed as a man. Is a time and a place and i'm going to lump on regardless.
Report J.D.Salinger June 9, 2017 12:08 PM BST
If you're interested LOTO, below is a peak at Happy Like A Fool's race at Keeneland on April 9th. A maiden special weight burn-up over 4 and a half furlongs worth $60,000.

Curiously, she wasn't made favourite for the race; the favourite was Paris Cruise, another Wesley Ward inmate who finished second. Make of that what you will. My interpretation is Happy Like A Fool hadn't been showing that much at home. According to Ward, she's a big, long-striding filly, so maybe she just needed a bit more time to develop over the Spring--but now, Ward describes her last piece of work as "monstrous".

Note the way she goes wide around the bend at Keeneland, without really being forced wide by another horse--it's as if she needed the extra space. At Ascot, she won't have that problem to negotiate because there's no bends. She'll also have an extra half furlong to race over, which she should relish, judging by the way she pulls away at the finish. I reckon there's a ton of improvement to come.

http://www.bloodhorse.com/horse-racing/race/race-results/MaidenSpecial?startDate=04%2F08%2F2017%2000%3A00%3A00&endDate=04%2F09%2F2017%2000%3A00%3A00&searchStateBredPlacers=False

Once you get the page up for Blood Horse race results April 9th, scroll down about halfway to race 2, below the result for race 2 is a small box which says WATCH VIDEO. Press that and the video shows in a box on the top left of your screen automatically. The picture expands by clicking a small arrow in the bottom right of the small screen.
Report liberator of the oppressed June 9, 2017 1:22 PM BST
Appreciated JD.
Report J.D.Salinger June 11, 2017 6:45 PM BST
Another piece in the Royal Ascot jigsaw puzzle for people to peruse. This is Nootka Sound's maiden win at Keeneland on April 27th. Ward has her pencilled in for the Windsor Castle Stakes, for which she is joint fav at 6/1. I took the 6/1 as soon as I got my greedy little hands on the video.

http://www.bloodhorse.com/horse-racing/race/race-results/MaidenSpecial?startDate=4%2F27%2F2017&endDate=4%2F28%2F2017&trackLookupId=959&type=MaidenSpecial&statesBred=&searchStateBredPlacers=false

Once you get the page up, scroll down to the Nootka Sound race, press WATCH VIDEO, then wait a few seconds for the video to load.
Report Deptford June 11, 2017 10:09 PM BST
Thanks J.D, Very helpful
Report J.D.Salinger June 12, 2017 12:36 AM BST
Here's a look at Bound for Nowhere's prep race at Keeneland, 5 and a half furlongs on grass on April 20th. Of interest because Ward says this colt works with Lady Aurelia. Throughout the race he is kept wide, 3 wide swinging into the straight yet still manages to win with the minimum of effort. The further he goes, the better he looks. This is a serious racehorse. But he will need to be up against Caravaggio et al in the Commonwealth Cup.

http://www.attheraces.com/racecard/Keeneland/20-April-2017/2018/
Report Boxman June 12, 2017 1:04 PM BST
Michael Bell's unbeaten filly Main Desire will now miss her intended engagement in the Queen Mary stakes at RA stregenthening Happy Like a Fool's position at the top of the market

Wesley Ward aiming to win the QM for the 3rd year running and looks to have a great chance with Happy like a fool

https://www.racingpost.com/news/royal-ascot/leading-fancy-main-desire-ruled-out-after-setback/289124
Report J.D.Salinger June 12, 2017 2:52 PM BST
Rotten luck for backers of Main Desire and her connections, Boxman.

Wesley Ward's Coventry Stakes colt Arawak, needs careful scrutiny. Waltzed home in a 5 furlong special maiden race worth $100,000 at Belmont park, May 26th. Interesting that he wore blinkers for his first visit to the track. He looked ready to roll as he came out of the stalls and stalked the leader for 3 furlongs. Despite Arawak seemingly going well within himself, Johnny V wasn't afraid to give his mount a couple of taps with the whip just to keep his mind on the job. Down the stretch, note the size of Arawak compared to the tiring frontrunner as he passes him--he's huge. He's like something out of Jurassic Park.

In today's Post, Ward says that rain forced Belmont Park officials to switch Arawak's race from the turf to the dirt. Yet according to the trainer, Arawak is a better horse on grass. Here, have a gander for yourself:

https://www.bloodhorse.com/horse-racing/race/USA/BEL/2017/5/26/1/race-1-msw-at-bel-on-5-26-17

The race shows automatically as soon as the page comes up.
Report Boxman June 12, 2017 4:11 PM BST
I took the 11/4 that was on offer with Hills earlier today on Happy like a fool now that Main Desire is missing and am debating backing more of Wesley Wards juveniles but want to be selective

His 2yo's always seem so fast and the ground I believe will be extremely fast come race day - i live fairly near Ascot and the forecast is dry for the rest of this week at least.

JDS - How would you personally rank his juveniles in the Ascot races and what would you make as his best hope - i note you have already backed Nookta Sound in the Windsor Castle.

One Wesley horse I wont be backing is Lady Aurelia as i really fancy Marsha and Goldream as 2 against the field in the King Stand Stakes - The Palace House stakes is always such a good guide for the King Stand
Report J.D.Salinger June 12, 2017 8:49 PM BST
I see where you're coming from with Marsha, Boxman. She looks like an improving mare going places, managing to give away her group 1 penalty in The Palace House Stakes and still win. Sir Mark has been publicly very bullish about her and there's been a steady drip of money throughout the last 10 days or so.

But I don't fancy her. She lacks that push button acceleration Lady Aurelia has under her bonnet.

My main fancy for Ascot is Happy Like A Fool. I feel there's a ton of improvement to come from this filly after watching her prep race, where I thought she seemed slightly unbalanced going around that bend. Must be a strange sensation for a 2 year old filly to experience that for the first time. Since 2009, when Ward first starting bringing horses over to Ascot, he has won the Queen Mary 3 times, with another filly being placed 2nd. That's a record a local trainer would be proud of, never mind an overseas trainer. Last but not least, I find Ward's enthusiasm for the filly infectious.

My 2nd main fancy is Arawak. I must confess, I was mightily impressed by his Belmont prep race. He looked primed and ready to roll that day. And his size--he looked enormous, as big and strong as a bull--the UK horses are going to look like chihuahuas in comparison when they line up to do battle. I think Arawak has flown under the radar a little bit, especially with Lady Aurelia the focus of most of the media attention. I'm sure this won't bother the horse's owners--Coolmore, who are not known for shouting the prowess of their horses from the rooftops, especially when they want to punt one themselves. This is a serious racehorse, with a serious engine.

My 3rd main fancy is Lady Aurelia. She's a speed machine--pure and simple. She has to take on older colts in the King's Stand for the first time, but I think she's up to the task. If you cast your eye down the list of runners, there's no champion sprinter in there, no unbeaten 3 or 4 year old planning to test his or her metal against their more illustrious elders. It's Lady Aurelia whose the one they all fear. She's the one with the proven track record, she's the one with the astonishing burst of acceleration. If the rain stays away, I have an inkling you will see an even more explosive performance than last year heart-pumping blitz up the straight.

“It was breathtaking from the top,” said Frankie Dettori, who was aboard Lady Aurelia in all three of her European starts. “For a winner to spring seven lengths at Royal Ascot is unbelievable. When I got to the furlong and a half and I asked her to go, she found another gear. I was completely shocked.”

I rest my case, Your Honour.
Report Boxman June 12, 2017 9:28 PM BST
Excellent writeup thank you JDS

Well im glad that your no.1 pick is the only Wesley Ward horse that i have backed so far

Less happy that you think Lady Aurelia will beat Marsha and co but time will tell with that one.
Report Big Black Cat June 15, 2017 12:15 PM BST
JDS-Lady Aurelia was really impressive in the QM last year-of course she was-but what did she beat?

Her prep race was fine too this year-but what did she beat?

On the other hand, Marsha has stuck it up to everyone in the Abbaye and the Palace House under a penalty.

Please do not underestimate her-no one was confident about her in the Palace House and she was not expected to win.

Race will be set up for Marsha's closing burst-will be a cracking race of course so GL to all backers!
Report Big Black Cat June 15, 2017 12:17 PM BST
PS JDS if you think she lacks push button acceleration then please listen to the jockey after the Palace House-and please watch her listed win at Ayr last year.....jockey got off and said one word. 'Aeroplane'.
Report J.D.Salinger June 15, 2017 9:33 PM BST
Your enthusiasm for Marsha is nice to see, BBC.

I don't think anybody on this side of the fence is underestimating her. Far from it, she is joint favourite in many books, and even her usually reticent trainer, Sir Mark Prescot, is more forthcoming than usual about one of his horses, saying Marsha has a winning chance. People should take note when Sir Mark opens his cigar-stained mouth.

As for me, defeat is out of the question, despite a little voice in the back of my head which keeps reminding me that a 3 year old filly has not won the King's Stand Stakes since Dominica in 2002. But hey--who cares about stats? Not me. All I can see in my mind's eye when those starting gates fly open at 15.40 next Tuesday, is Lady Aurelia blasting down Ascot's beautifully-manicured lawn like an exocet missile on four legs. The startled opposition won't see which way she's gone. I mean it. Even the Queen's jaw will drop to the ground like a bag of rusty spanners.

I can't wait.
Report Big Black Cat June 16, 2017 11:22 AM BST
JDS I really don't see how anyone can be as confident about winning this race-this is arguably the hottest race of the week?

I am worried about LA, the French colt, Goldream etc etc.... its a very hot race.

I have the formbook to back me up to give me some hope.  LA was an excellent 2 yo, won her prep well, but what happens if she bleeds again?

And this is a very different ballgame to beating an average bunch of 2 yo's like she did last year.  There are some serious Group 1 horses in this field.
Report Big Black Cat June 20, 2017 3:48 PM BST
Fair play to LA that was a tremendous performance.
Report unclepuncle June 20, 2017 4:48 PM BST
Was certainly awesome but have any other horses ever been allowed to be ponied to the start in the UK - I wasn't aware it was allowed under our rules?Confused!
Report liberator of the oppressed June 20, 2017 5:00 PM BST
Baboushka .. Had 3 out of 4 £40 on Brother Bare only loser biggies are favourite in the GC and Shake the road to be placed ; Mr Shannon's in the Royal Hunt 33/1 with a tasty tasty tasty 8/1 winner got £40 on Hobson in next double with Star Rider 33/1 first leg, Happy like a fool for a few spondooliks, laugh aloud then Caravaggio for a crate And Winter 5/2 before last time out for a snifter or two have backed September for next years 1000 gns £100 @ 20/1 might have  afew more pounds on not 5/4 for nothing weill hose up and finally the biigie Tasleet for serious dosh in the Jubilee might rain before Saturday pom pom on ice. Oi Oi.
Report BigField June 20, 2017 8:35 PM BST
He did put up Happy Life A Fool when asked about his best chance earlier today so must be confident
Report equine flew June 20, 2017 10:35 PM BST
Perhaps just me , but when he has a runner in a race, it just makes it a no bet race for me.  Impossible to tie the form together.

That said, I still enjoy watching.
Report Boxman June 21, 2017 12:26 PM BST
Well done Lady Aurelia backers , she was just too good on the day.

Hoping Happy like a fool wins for him today
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