Saturday sees one of the biggest racing days of the flat season with the running of the King George VI and Queen Elizabeth stakes run at Ascot.
The event is sponsored by Qipco who also sponsor Champions day back at Ascot in October. Unfortunately this year the race will be without one of, if not the worlds greatest jockey Lanfranco (Frankie) Dettori.
Dettori picked up a 10 day suspension (latterly reduced to 6 days) at the recent Newmarket July meeting and therefore misses this big race in which he would have ridden Cracksman, he also misses the early part of the Glorious Goodwood meeting next week.
King George VI and Queen Elizabeth Stakes – History of the race
The King George VI & Queen Elizabeth Stakes (Sponsored by QIPCO) was first run in the early 1950’s (First running in 1951) and is known to be one of the world’s foremost races for middle distance horses, mainly contested by the previous years classic generation.
It is open to three year old,s and older horses, and as such is known as a battle of the classic generations.
The King George VI and Queen Elizabeth Stakes – 10 interesting facts (and a couple of stories thrown in)
– The first ever running was worth £25,322 to the winner and was the richest ever race to be run in England. Saturdays renewal is worth well over £1.000.000.
– The first Derby winner to go on and win the King George (as it is know in racing circles) was Tulyar.
– The first royal winner of the race named after Queen Elizabeth’s parents was Aureol in 1954.
– The greatest number of wins by a single jockey is 7, held by the legend that is Lester Piggott with the first of those coming on Meadow Court.
– Dhalia was the very first dual winner of the race in 1973 and 1974 winning the first of those as a three year old filly. This feat has never been achieved since although last years winner Enable (currently injured) would have been teed up for an attempt this year and would likely have been a strong favorite.
An amazing story…….
Dhalia’s owner, the flamboyant Texan Nelson Bunker Hunt, did not want to race in the first of those wins in 1973, as the horse had run just one week earlier against her own sex in the Irish Oaks.
The trainer, Maurice Zilber, declared her anyway and phoned Hunt to say she had to run. The story says that Hunt told Zilber he would call him back in 30 minutes after that infamous call. This was a huge shout by a trainer to enter a horse without the owners permission.
He phoned back and said, ‘If you run her and she wins, okay. If she gets beaten, I will take all my horses away from you’. Zilber said, “Fine, but get on a plane. This may be your first and last chance to meet the Queen of England”
The rest as they say is history……………
– The notorious and ill fated Shergar became only the fifth (at the time) horse in history to accomplish the treble of the Derby, Irish Derby and King George.
– The shortest priced winner of the race was the Dick Hern trained, Willie Carson ridden Nashwan at 2/9
– Lammtarra won the King George before going on to win the Arc de Triomphe and end his career unbeaten.
The double treble (if that makes sense)
Swain from the Godolphin operation was only the second horse to win the race twice (1997 & 1998) and was followed by another win for Sheikh Mohammed when Daylami won in 1999.
Daylami was ridden by Frankie Dettori who was also notching his third win in the race.
– In 2005 the race was not run at Ascot as the course was undergoing repair and redevelopment. In this renewal run at Newbury racecourse, Azamour trained in Ireland was the victor.
– Michael Stoute became the first trainer to saddle the first three home in 2009 the globe trotter Conduit beating stablemates Tartan Bearer and Ask.
– The first ever German trained winner of the race was Danedream in 2012, trained by Peter Schiergen.
The King George and Queen Elizabeth Stakes – Racecard for Saturday 28th July.
13:50 Princess Margaret Keeneland Stakes (Fillies’ Group 3) (2yo, Class 1, 6f, 7 runners)
14:25 Porsche Handicap (Str) (3yo, Class 2, 1m, 15 runners)
15:00 Gigaset International Stakes (Heritage Handicap) (3yo+, Class 2, 7f, 29 runners)
15:40 King George VI And Queen Elizabeth Stakes (Sponsored By Qipco) (Group 1) (3yo+, Class 1, 1m 3f 211y, 8 runners)
16:15 Wooldridge Group Pat Eddery Stakes (Listed) (2yo, Class 1, 7f, 6 runners)
16:50 Longines Handicap (Lady Amateurs) (3yo+, Class 3, 7f, 12 runners)
17:20 Canisbay Bloodstock Handicap (3yo+, Class 3, 1m 3f 211y, 10 runners)
The King George and Queen Elizabeth Stakes Meeting – Betting Analysis and tips.
The Big Race – 3.40pm
The big race on Saturday only comprises of 8 runners and it is possible that Cracksman will not run if the ground remains on the fast side so you will need to take a look on Saturday morning before placing any bets.
Michael Stoute has the two horses at the head of the betting in Crystal Ocean and Poet’s Word, Poets word was an impressive winner against Cracksman last time at Royal Ascot when that rival seemed to be ill at ease on the ground (has to be a concern) outside of the aforementioned three horses it seems difficult to see anything else getting involved.
However, Cracksman’s trainer John Gosden also has Coronet who is a biggest priced 12/1 with Paddy Power.
This filly looks to be improving rapidly after a Group 2 win and a fine placed effort in Group 1 company last time.
The Gigaset International Handicap – 3.00pm
Always a highly competitive race and no difference this year with 29 runners due to do battle over the straight 7 furlongs.
The two horses we like against the field are Spanish City who is priced up at 16/1 with Corals and Skybet and Chessman trained by Archie Watson and available at 25/1 with Bet 365.
Spanish City ran a very creditable race at Newmarket last time when 2nd of 18 and probably did not get the best of runs when initially making his move. As long as the horse gets a clear run this time and makes its run a little later then looks a good bet to finish in the frame.
Chessman is a little different in that the horse has only had 8 races so is very much unexposed. Was a really creditable 3rd last time out in Listed class when being trapped wide and then running on late to be beaten just a little over 2 lengths.
Had run really well at Royal Ascot in 2017 when finishing 7th of 20 and on the basis of it’s last run looks really well handicapped.
I would advise waiting till Saturday morning to place your bets as some bookmakers will surely paying out 6 places for each way punters.
For more betting help then check out our Top 5 Bookmakers for Horse Racing.
Enjoy the racing