Tuesday 25 October 2016

Lucida to go one better

Lucida could give Jim Bolger success at Royal Ascot
Lucida could give Jim Bolger success at Royal Ascot

There have been a couple of disappointing Irish runners on the opening two days of Royal Ascot, and then there has been Free Eagle, but in a week that was billed to be a good one for Dermot Weld and Jim Bolger, tomorrow could be the day Bolger makes his mark in Group One company.

The Coronation Stakes is the feature race tomorrow and the bookmakers have two Irish three-year-old fillies at the head of the market but they could have them the wrong way around.


Aidan O'Brien's Found is the current favourite and she has been second on both her starts this season, most recently in the Irish 1,000 Guineas, which Bolger won with Pleascach, so he'll have a guide as to what is required here with Godolphin's Lucida, who has only raced once this term, when second to Legatissimo in the English 1,000 Guineas.

Lucida was just collared by Legatissimo in the Guineas in a similar way that Legatissimo was collared by Qualify in the English Oaks and you'd have to expect that on just her second start of the season there will be plenty of room for improvement for Lucida, who is one of three Godolphin runners in the nine-horse race and maybe the one to lead them home.

The other Group One race tomorrow has been the subject of some negativity despite the fact that it will be the first running of the Commonwealth Cup.

To be run over six furlongs, the Commonwealth Cup is set to be an absolute belter of a race and it could indeed be one of the races of the week. However, the negativity stems from the fact that it has diverted the often intriguing three-year-olds out of the Diamond Jubilee on Saturday.


Having enjoyed success yesterday with Wesley Ward for the Coolmore team, Ryan Moore will be hopeful of more of the same with Hootenanny who is back to follow up last year's win here, while, of course, Eddie Lynam's Anthem Alexander will try and follow her Queen Mary Stakes win of 2014 where she beat the again opposing Tiggy Wiggy.

With those names alone you can easily see how much of a good race it is going to be and, hopefully, Lynam can bring the prize back to Ireland.

Nine Irish runners are due to line up on the fourth day of Royal Ascot and there's no doubt that strong claims are held in both of the Group Ones but elsewhere on the card Willie Mullins will look for another winner at the meeting with Sempre Medici in the Duke Of Edinburgh Stakes, while there will be a free Dubai Duty Free Irish Derby entry for the winner of the King Edward VII Stakes and Pat Smullen has picked up a real good spare in this race for Michael Stoute aboard the Coolmore-owned Stravagante.

America's most prolific Royal Ascot raider Wesley Ward does have Back At The Ranch and Laxfield Road who will both be interesting because anything he brings over warrants the height of respect and a second look.

royal ascot tomorrow

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