Horse Racing

Royal Ascot 2020 – Day Three – Thursday

Thursday brings us day 3 of 5 of Royal Ascot and WhichBookie racing tipster Will Smith is back with more HOT TIPS for the Golden Gates Handicap, Jersey Stakes and of course, the Ascot Gold Cup.

Will is providing daily tips for Royal Ascot and picked 2 winners and placed a third from four tipped races on Day 2.

Below, you’ll find Will’s tips for Day 3 of Royal Ascot.


Royal Ascot Day 3 Tips & Preview Video

Royal Ascot Day 3 Betting Tips

Note: Any odds featured on this page were correct at time of publishing (17:49pm 17/06/2020) and are subject to change.

1.15 – Golden Gates Handicap

Maori Knight – 10/1 EW (Bet365)

HMS President – 33/1 EW (Ladbrokes / Coral)

Very similar to the King Edward V Handicap yesterday, this a fiendishly competitive three-year-old handicap, which is chockful of, not just potential, but definite improvers. That aforementioned race went to a horse who had just two career starts, and who broke well and maintained a prominent sit before getting first run in the straight.

Our selection here is positively long in the tooth compared to Hukum yesterday, as Maori Knight has had four career starts. He has a nice prominent run style, and shaped last time as if he was about to take a significant step forward. At 10/1 with Bet 365, Richard Hughes’ Maori Knight is well worth an investment.

At Haydock 11 days ago, he outbattled a Sir Michael Stoute-trained improver in determined fashion, only to be broadsided by a horse who challenged the other side that had left it late. He is a strong stayer at the trip and it would be nice here if David Egan were to take a lead from something until the top of the straight and then striking for home.

Back Maori Knight in the Golden Gates Handicap with Bet365!
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The three market leaders look strong – Acquitted, Global Storm and Hypothetical – but I think Maori Knight’s form has as strong a look to it as those. Of the bigger prices, HMS President could be worth an each-way bet at 33/1 with Ladbrokes or Coral. Eve Johnson Houghton’s charge fared best of those that raced close to the pace in the Yarmouth race that Bodyline was second in. While Bodyline was ultimately only sixth on Wednesday, he was not seen to best effect, and is still one to follow.


2.25 – Jersey Stakes

Final Song – 11/1 EW (Skybet)

Ventura Lightning – 28/1 EW (Skybet)

Fleeting Prince – 66/1 EW (Skybet)

Yes, you have seen that correct – I am recommending three selections in the Jersey Stakes. At the prices advised and with the offer of a helpful five places each-way with Skybet, I can’t see any reason not to suggest as such.

The first named, Final Song, is the main selection at 11/1 with Skybet, and she represents probably the second-best piece of form brought into the race by any of the runners. She was a cracking fourth behind Love in the 1000 Guineas, and just faded in the closing stages, suggesting strongly that the drop from a mile to 7f will suit her very nicely.

The only form-line that I can see that is stronger at this stage, is the Irish 2000 Guineas last weekend, in which Monarch Of Egypt suffered an interrupted passage, and was worth marking up. But whether it was enough to consider backing him at 5/1 just six days later, dropping in trip, I’m not so sure.

Back Final Song in the Jersey Stakes with Skybet!
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The other two selections are wild prices, and come from the same race at Newcastle last week, the Group 3 Pavilion Stakes, of which the two notable features were the quick time and the prominence of those that raced near the stands rail in that race.

Ventura Lightning and Fleeting Prince are available at 28/1 and 66/1 respectively with Skybet, and both must be backed to improve for the step up to 7f at Ascot here. They ran crackers at Newcastle from unfavourable low draws, and weren’t stopping at the line.

Neither horse has yet to encounter 7f or Ascot yet, but given they are both sired by No Nay Never, who himself won at Royal Ascot, but he has also sired many good horses who have stayed 7f to 1m, and also many of his offspring have won at Ascot too. It is conceivable that Ventura Lightning and Fleeting Prince could improve notably for the test they face here, and if they do, they are silly prices at 28/1 and 66/1.


3.35 – Ascot Gold Cup

Nayef Road – 16/1 EW (Ladbrokes / Coral)

Having suggested backing Aidan O’Brien’s Kew Gardens for this a while ago, I was hoping that come 3.40, we would be seeing Ryan Moore cross the line victorious. I still have that notion, but it will be on Mark Johnston’s star stayer now, Nayef Road, rather than Kew Gardens, who sadly Aidan O’Brien wasn’t quite happy with.

Nayef Road is 16/1 with Ladbrokes and Coral, and that seems particularly generous for a horse who saw off a decent field of stayers from the front in the Sagaro Stakes, which is never easy to do on the round course at Newcastle. In addition to that he was a brave, rallying third in last year’s Queen’s Vase at the Royal meeting, and looks as if he has come back this season a better and stronger horse on the evidence of the Newcastle win.

As laid out in the Kew Gardens recommendation, I was keen to oppose Stradivarius for a number of reasons. He appeared to be slightly ill at ease on his reappearance at Newmarket behind superstar Ghayyaith, and it would take a feat of genius from John Gosden to get him at his peak just under two weeks later.

Back Nayef Road in the Ascot Gold Cup with Ladbrokes!
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