Royal Ascot Spot Plays – Day 1 – Tuesday, June 16th

Royal Ascot – Day 1 (Tuesday, June 16th, 2015)

Race 1 – 9:30 AM EDT the “Queen Anne,” Group 1, One Mile, Purse = $585,000

Top pick – #6 Solow
2nd Pick – #5 Night of Thunder
3rd pick – #1 Able Friend

This appears to be a match race between # 6 Solow (7/5 ML) from French trainer Freddie Head and French owners Wertheimer Et Frere (the people that brought us Goldikova to the Breeder’s Cup for three straight wins in the Breeder’s Cup Mile) and #1 Able Friend (2/1 ML), Hong Kong’s champion miler. From what I know of the French and Hong Kong form, Solow has faced the tougher competition and should win here. Rewarding Hero, the horse than ran close behind Able Friend in his last two starts, was 9/1 in Hong Kong in a Group 2 going 7 furlongs two days ago and finished 5th in a blanket finish. Not a ringing endorsement. #5 Night of Thunder (9/2 ML) has won some big races but would have to step it up here.

Race 3 – 10:40 AM EDT the “King’s Stand,” Group 1, 5 furlongs, Purse = $585,000

Top pick – # 17 Mecca’s Angel (mare)
2nd pick – #12 Sole Power
3rd pick – #9 Pearl Secret
4th pick – #18 Shamal Wind (mare)

If #12 Sole Power (3/1 ML) doesn’t win this race the payoffs could be huge. He has won the race twice and is the one proven Group 1 performer in the field.

My top pick here is #17 Mecca’s Angel (6/1 ML). Her record at 5f is sensational, as she has won her last five 5 furlong races – all by open lengths – and she has the tactical speed to get the jump on Sole Power, who never is on the pace.

#9 Pearl Secret (15/1 ML) was third in this race last year to Sole Power, and #18 Shamal Wind (6/1 ML) is a very honest mare that represents Australia in this spot. As I broke down her form it was apparent that she doesn’t measure up to the Australian horses that have won this race in past years.

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