ROYAL ASCOT BETTING TIPS: Day five selections from Robin Goodfellow and Hollie Doyle

The return of 2018 Derby winner Masar adds further glamour to an intriguing renewal of the Hardwicke Stakes. 

But this will be a tough ask for the Epsom hero with Coronation Stakes winner Defoe in opposition alongside Yorkshire Cup runner-up Southern France and MIRAGE DANCER whose trainer has made this race his own in the last decade. 

With six victories from the last 10 runnings, Sir Michael Stoute is a trainer to fear and the selection looks a typical slow burner for the Newmarket maestro.

Mirage Dancer (left) has matured like many Sir Michael Stoute middle-distance performers

Mirage Dancer (left) has matured like many Sir Michael Stoute middle-distance performers 

ROYAL ASCOT 

ROBIN GOODFELLOW

2.30 Mohican Heights

3.05 Space Blues

3.40 Mirage Dancer

4.20 City Light

5.00 Cape Byron (nb)

5.35 Cleonte (nap)

NEWMARKET – 3.40 Mirage Dancer (nap); 4.20 Invincible Army (nb).

GIMCRACK 

2.30 Lope Y Fernandez

3.05 Space Blues

3.40 Defoe

4.20 Invincible Army

5.00 Cape Byron

5.35 Corelli

NORTHERNER – 5.00 Gunme tal (nap); 5.35 Lucky Deal (nb)

2.30 CHESHAM STAKES

Given the way Aidan O’Brien adopts a patient approach with his juveniles, any two-year-old which wins first time out is normally very useful, so there is no surprise to see smooth Curragh winner Lope Y Fernandez head the market. 

However, he faces a number of other choice youngsters and stablemate Year Of The Tiger was another to catch the eye over a trip which looked short of his best at the Curragh. 

The step up in trip should suit both him and Mohican Heights, purchased earlier this week for £520,000. He left a good impression when overcoming greenness to win well at Leopardstown on his debut. As a son of Australia, today’s trip will suit.

SELECTION: MOHICAN HEIGHTS 12-1

DANGER: YEAR OF THE TIGER 10-1

3.05 JERSEY STAKES 

SPACE BLUES has proved himself a class act since dropping in trip to seven furlongs and can utilise his potent turn of foot again here. 

Admittedly, he only won by a neck at Epsom last time, but he didn’t appear in love with the track that day and the margin of victory arguably didn’t represent his superiority. His sectional times were explosive and he may well confirm placings with runner-up Urban Icon, who boasts a solid frame chance. 

Happy Power looks the chief threat to Space Blues following his gritty York win over a mile. A good test at today’s trip may represent his optimum conditions at present, even if stall one isn’t ideal.

SELECTION: SPACE BLUES 5-2

DANGER: HAPPY POWER 13-2

3.40 HARDWICKE STAKES    

The return of 2018 Derby winner Masar adds further glamour to an intriguing renewal of the Hardwicke Stakes. 

But this will be a tough ask for the Epsom hero with Coronation Stakes winner Defoe in opposition alongside Yorkshire Cup runner-up Southern France and MIRAGE DANCER whose trainer has made this race his own in the last decade. 

With six victories from the last 10 runnings, Sir Michael Stoute is a trainer to fear and the selection looks a typical slow burner for the Newmarket maestro. 

It is good to see connections keeping faith with Pat Dobbs, who is 2-2 aboard the five-year-old. A rather headstrong individual in his early years, Mirage Dancer has matured like many Stoute middle-distance performers and he is likely to be positioned handily by Dobbs — probably a wise tactic given it has been difficult to make ground on the round track this week.

Defoe is yet to race at this venue but his trainer felt he was as good as ever going into the Coronation Stakes and that view was vindicated. He should get more good pace, with Salouen (third that day) and Communique likely to bowl along at the head of affairs, and 

SELECTION: MIRAGE DANCER 5-1

DANGER: DEFOE 4-1

4.20 DIAMOND JUBILEE

The surprise presence of King’s Stand winner Blue Point (now 4-5 at Ascot) and Le Brivido, who didn’t appear to quite get home in Tuesday’s Queen Anne Stakes, ensure this is a cracking renewal. 

Last year’s second and third also take their chance and French raider CITY LIGHT is favoured to go one better than 12 months ago and confirm placings with Bound For Nowhere. 

City Light reared leaving the stalls in this event 12 months ago, yet produced terrific acceleration to hit the front close home only to be denied on the line by Merchant Navy and a vintage Ryan Moore ride. City Light’s return to action in April was not far off his best.

SELECTION: CITY LIGHT 15-2

DANGER: LE BRIVIDO 10-1

5.00 WOKINGHAM STAKES     

Having the speed to win over six furlongs and the stamina for a seventh furlong is a very useful attribute in this race given the pace that is usually generated and, with that in mind, CAPE BYRON is the pick. 

The form of his Victoria Cup win was given a boost earlier this week by prominent runs for Raising Sand and Kynren in the Hunt Cup and there is little doubt a strongly-run affair at today’s trip should suit the selection perfectly. He is 3-7 on a straight track and his course stats are 10271.

Tis Marvellous was fourth in this last year when isolated on the far side but was good enough to finish 3l adrift of star sprinter Invincible Army earlier this season and could outrun his odds.

SELECTION: CAPE BYRON 15-2

DANGER: TIS MARVELLOUS 22-1

5.35 QUEEN ALEXANDRA

CLEONTE even found last season’s Cesarewitch an insufficient test of stamina so today’s conditions should be perfect and he is fancied to bustle up likely favourite Max Dynamite. 

The selection wasn’t disgraced in the mud at Chester last time but appears a much happier horse on a decent surface and his career-best performance came in the Sagaro Stakes last month when he chased home Gold Cup runner-up Dee Ex Bee.

This looks a more suitable test for Max Dynamite given he has been highly tried in the last year, including here in last season’s Gold Cup. 2018 winner Pallasator is also respected along with Black Corton.

SELECTION: CLEONTE 11-2

DANGER: MAX DYNAMITE 11-4

HOLLIE DOYLE: MURPHY GOES FOR HIS GUN TO STOP RIVALS

Title-chasing jockey Oisin Murphy probably had a few options when picking a mount in the Wokingham Stakes so the fact he has chosen GUNMETAL is a decent endorsement.

The six-year-old looks competitive off his handicap mark. Gunmetal stormed home when fourth to Duke of Firenze over five furlongs at York last time out and his record shows he is better at today’s furlong longer distance. In the opener, I was impressed with Charlie Appleby-trained PINATUBO when he won the Woodcote Stakes at Epsom.

He looked like he could improve physically and he hit the finishing line hard.

URBAN ICON has put in three solid efforts this season already. The step up to seven furlongs and a mile this season has suited him and he has a big prize in him. Hopefully it will be the Jersey Stakes.

CAPTAIN HEATH (MARCUS TOWNEND)

2.30 SUN POWER

3.05 MOMKIN

3.40 DEFOE

4.20 INVINCIBLE ARMY

5.00 TIS MARVELLOUS (NAP)

5.35 CORELLI

FORECAST

2.30 PINATUBO (NAP)

3.05 HAPPY POWER

3.40 MASAR

4.20 BLUE POINT

5.00 INTISAAB

5.35 MAX DYNAMITE

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