Horse Talk with Simon Jackson:
Top horse-racing tips and the latest news.
CRYSTAL Ocean, who was highlighted in this column last week, secured his first Group 1 win when landing the £750,000 Prince Of Wales’s Stakes at Royal Ascot.
The ultra-consistent five-year-old had previously won seven and been placed seven times in 14 starts, winning six Group races and finishing runner-up in the St Leger, King George VI and Queen Elizabeth Stakes and Champion Stakes.
He finally secured the elusive Group 1 success after travelling well on rain-softened ground throughout the 10-furlong contest for Frankie Dettori; racing close to the pace before kicking clear at the top of the straight.
Bookmaker Paddy Power have trimmed Sir Michael Stoute’s charge to 3-1 from 4-1 for the King George VI and Queen Elizabeth Stakes at Ascot on July 27. The same firm offer 5-1 for the Coral-Eclipse at Sandown on July 6.
“I knew Crystal Ocean stayed really well, so I kicked on early and did not hear anything coming. The rest is history,” said Dettori who has been in tremendous form at Ascot, at the time of writing winning six races this week to boost his lifetime Royal Ascot tally to 66 wins.
“Everything went to plan,” Dettori continued. “I sat where I wanted to sit and kicked early to use his stamina. He was full of running and I felt it was going to take a good one to get past me.
“It was great. As soon as I knew Enable was going for the Eclipse, I rang Sir Michael’s office and said I was available. He was quick to react and called me in the afternoon to say I’d got the ride and I was delighted.
“He’s an ultra-consistent horse, he’s a heavyweight of the sport, never runs a bad race. I was concerned about the rain because all his best form is on firm ground, and the race went exactly as I thought. I thought I’d better kick round the turn and use my stamina, and in fairness he stuck his head out and galloped right to the line.
“He’s in all the big ones – a mile and a quarter, a mile and a half. He’s a five-year-old, mature and strong. I rode him in the morning and he was laid back and didn’t give much of a feel, but he’s saved his best for the afternoon.”
Crystal Ocean was the second Royal Ascot winner tipped by Horse Talk in last week’s column, following the success of Blue Point in the King’s Stand Stakes.
Blue Point has also been entered in the Diamond Jubilee Stakes on Saturday and is fancied to win for the second time this week.
Horse Talk with Simon Jackson. Showcasing horse racing in London and the south east.