HORSE RACING FIXTURES AND RESULTS
HORSE RACING FEATURE
Royal Ascot Ratings Update: The Group 1s
In part 1 of this week's Ratings Update, Nic Doggett highlights the major changes to the Timeform ratings from the Group 1s at Royal Ascot 2017.
There was a large field for the 2017 Queen Anne Stakes but it wasn't absolutely full of quality, Ribchester (unchanged on 131) the only European Group 1 winner amongst them, and although Deauville, American Patriot and Miss Temple City had all won Grade 1s in the US they had all been relatively weak races for the top level. However, it was a fair race all round, no doubting the result, whilst a course-record time adds substance for all that the very firm ground was obviously a big contributing factor. The biggest improver was Deauville (up 2 lb to 124) who was dropped back to 1m and refitted with headgear, both for the first time since his two-year-old season. This effort increases his options for the rest of the season.
The King's Stand wasn't such a cosmopolitan renewal as we've sometimes had in recent years, with no southern hemisphere challenge and only two of the 17-strong field trained outside of Britain and Ireland, but it looked a deep race. There was no bias in the draw, whilst it was a trouble-free race too ,and very much a case of the cream rising to the top, with Lady Aurelia (up 8 lb to 135) producing a quite brilliant and dominant display of speed, amongst the best ever performances in this race and one of the best ever from a filly in Timeform's 69-year history; the time was very fast, only just outside of Miss Andretti's course record. Last year’s winner Profitable (125) was a gallant second, matching the pick of his form shown when winning the Temple Stakes at Haydock last term.
The focus was on Churchill (remains on 126p) in Tuesday’s final Group 1, as he was bidding to complete the rare treble of Guineas, Irish Guineas and St James's Palace Stakes, and his chance was an obvious one on form, facing a trio of rivals that he had beaten in the first two races, as well as the Poulains third and three make-weights. That he failed to give his running was an obvious let-down, detracting somewhat from the performance of the winner, though Barney Roy (up 3 lb to 128p) was having just his fourth run and hadn't been seen to advantage at Newmarket. A conclusive rematch between the pair is hopefully on the cards for later in the summer, though the winner is set to go up in trip.