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Gerald Delamere: Miss Beabea the value Jubilee pick; Fast ground is bonus for last year's Hardwicke second Zindabad and Stoute-trained course winner Cover Up looks a class act in marathon.

Byline: Gerald Delamere

Hardwicke Stakes (Group 2)

3.05 Royal Ascot

POSITIVES

Millenary finished runner-up to Marienbard at Newmarket with Storming Home and Zindabad just behind. In a competitive renewal, he will go close.

Zindabad has great prospects of going one better than last year, with the ground dried out. He has been in cracking form, winning the Yorkshire Cup and running with credit in the Coronation Cup until the soft ground took its toll.

Storming Home was forced to challenge wide up the near side in the Coronation Cup and that proved impossible. Very consistent in the top flight last year, the colt was successful here in the King Edward VII Stakes. He acts on any going.

Asian Heights split a pastern after his success in the Predominate Stakes in May last year. He returned to win a messy race at Windsor when receiving 3lb from Potemkin. It was only his fourth career outing and he is open to improvement.

NEGATIVES

Newbury's Aston Park Stakes has provided Henry Cecil with three winners of this. High Pitched was impressive there last month, but will need lots of rain to come into the equation.

lSelection: Zindabad

lAlternative: Storming Home

Golden Jubilee Stakes (Group 1)

3.45 Royal Ascot

POSITIVES

Bahamian Pirate has had little luck in running recently and is considerably better than his form figures suggest. Should rain materialise here, it is worth noting that his past four Group races have all been on fast ground and he is infinitely better on soft.

In the same colours, Continent ran a super race on Tuesday and is much better equipped for dealing with fast ground. He has been running well at the top level and success isn't far away.

Danehurst hit form last autumn in two quality Listed races at Newmarket and Doncaster, beating Orientor on each occasion. She was too free first time out last year in the King's Stand, but goes appreciably better for today's jockey Seb Sanders, who remains unbeaten in three rides on the filly.

Johannesburg went from a Fairyhouse maiden to Breeders' Cup success. It is testimony to Aidan O'Brien's skill that so many of his leading juveniles train on; he has brought colts back from a mile to become top sprinters, and Johannesburg looks like another - if he is ready.

Duke of York Stakes winners have a super record in this, and Invincible Spirit was a game winner on the Knavesmire. Pat Eddery bounced off most of the runners when trying for a run in the Temple Stakes and he now prefers stable companion, Vision Of Night.

The six-year-old is talented - when everything falls into place and he doesn't hang. He acts on most ground and must be thereabouts.

Misraah would be good enough if in the mood and things fall right. A stiff finish suits his late burst - at Sandown he came from an impossible position so don't rule him out.

Mugharreb ran with great credit when second in the Duke of York first time out. This is not a great Group 1, so any improvement would put him in the picture.

Three Points is a much better horse on fast ground as he demonstrated when runner-up in this event last year. Check the overnight weather.

Miss Beabea has some smart placed form in Ireland against Johannesburg and Quarter Moon. Her three runs this season have been in soft ground and she is a much better filly on a fast surface. She returned to form last time and looks the value each-way.

NEGATIVES

Caller One is awesome on dirt, but his blinding early speed may not be so effective on turf over a stiff straight course.

Feet So Fast looked an impressive winner of a valuable handicap at Lingfield, but had a big draw advantage, and the form hasn't worked out.

lSelection: Miss Beabea

lAlternative: Johannesburg

Wokingham Stakes (Handicap)

4.20 Royal Ascot

POSITIVES

Flying Millie needed the run at Goodwood, but ran an eye-catching race under 10st. A slow start left her with ground to make up, and when staying on she ran into trouble inside the last furlong. She has winning form over the course and acts on any going.

Watching didn't have any luck in running at Haydock, in addition to a bad draw. At Epsom, he had got over to the near rail but the gap didn't come until well inside the last. He is well-in here, and ready to strike.

Doctor Spin has twice been drawn on the wrong side in this race and did well to reach fifth last year. He lost ground at the start at York last time but ran into fifth. He is almost a stone lower now, but he needs good ground.

Antonio Canova has a fine record in big fields and after winning the Great St Wilfred Handicap at Ripon he finished fourth in the Ayr Gold Cup. He looks a live prospect.

Chookie Heiton has run tremendously well in the two best trials, at Newmarket and York. Runner-up to Border Subject at HQ, he had to pull wide when his rival had control of the race in front.

Banjo Bay ran a cracking race against Sea Star at Newmarket, and also on his first try this season over six furlongs at York. If the rain comes overnight, this stiffer course may be perfect.

Crystal Castle is an intriguing candidate who made his British debut over a mile at Sandown. Everything suggests he is a sprinter and there isn't another Group 3-winning sprinter on fast ground in the field.

NEGATIVES

Border Subject made the running last year in the Hunt Cup and has since proved to be a sprinter with wins at Windsor and Newmarket - but the latter race has proved to be a poor trial for this.

Marsad landed a huge gamble at Newmarket off 90, but this doesn't seem his course - he has twice been well beaten in this event.

lSelection: Chookie Heiton

lAlternative: Flying Millie

Queen Alexandra Stakes

5.30 Royal Ascot

POSITIVES

Cover Up won the Ascot Stakes last year and was just touched off in the Northumberland Plate by Archduke Ferdinand, who was receiving 16lb. He still leads the smart horses at home and needed the run in the Chester Cup.

First Ballot won over 12 furlongs at Newmarket this term, and 14 furlongs at Goodwood last July - form over that mile shorter trip has proved very important in this race.

Archduke Ferdinand was too free first time out and wasn't fully tuned up at Chester. He is sure to make a big impression with his allowances.

Yorkshire didn't settle well enough in easy ground in 1998 to get home. Hurdles have changed his attitude recently and, without a penalty and with a previously successful partner back on board, he must go close.

San Sebastian won this in 1999 and then developed into a smart stayer. He hasn't found form this season, but the trip will bring out the best in him.

NEGATIVES

Double Honour has the class, but his stamina is far from certain. His penalty has proved a problem for other four-year-olds.

lSelection: Cover Up

lAlternative: Yorkshire

2.30 Henry Carnarvon Stakes (Listed)

lSelection: Topkamp

lAlternative: Gallivant

4.55 Sandringham Stakes (Handicap)

lSelection: Tashawak

lAlternative: Katch Me Katie
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Article Details
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Title Annotation:Sports
Publication:The Racing Post (London, England)
Date:Jun 22, 2002
Words:1212
Previous Article:Class can tell for O'Brien's champion; Irish view.
Next Article:Topspeed: Johannesburg different class.


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