The Ten To Follow Royal Ascot Mini Game provides racing fans the opportunity to top the leaderboard once again, across five fabulous days of racing.
The rules are simple; pick 10 horses to represent your stable across the Royal Meeting. When they win, you earn points and the stables with the most points take the biggest share of the pot, with prizes down to 500th place.
Familiarity may breed ignorance when it comes to picking a stable for Royal Ascot, and it might just mean that some of the international runners are under-represented for the Ten To Follow.
We’ve picked out five that are worth keeping in mind.
Extravagant Kid - King’s Stand - Brendan Walsh
At the start of year, Brendan Walsh’s 8yo was 0 from 13 in Listed and Group races but at Meydan on World Cup night, he came to life with a bang.
Keen under Ryan Moore in the Al Quoz Sprint, the gelding showed plenty of petrol left in the tank to show a real turn of foot and put the race to bed well.
Originally penciled in for either the King’s Stand or the Diamond Jubilee, it looks as though the shorter option is on the card, with the son of Kiss The Kid likely to be allowed to stride on over 5f at Ascot. Neither Battaash or Glass Slippers, likely to be one-two in the pool have been seen yet this term, so the race could be open to a surprise.
Campanelle - Commonwealth Cup - Wesley Ward
Few things are as synonymous with Royal Ascot as a Wesley Ward speedster or two making the trip across the Atlantic, and Campanelle is one that has already shown what she can do.
Not the typical Wesley Ward type to lead from the get-go, she only hit the front inside the final two furlongs of the Queen Mary last term, but fought on well for Frankie Dettori. She proved that was no fluke taking on the boys, and beating shock Coventry winner Nando Parrado next time out.
She’s not been seen since finishing fourth at the Breeders’ Cup, but it’d be foolish to write her off, even after this break.
Ruthin - Queen Mary Stakes - Wesley Ward
In the same colours, targeting the same race her elder stablemate was successful in last year is Ruthin. A first winner on the track for Ribchester as a sire, the filly was an explosive winner of her only start to date.
Blitzing out of the stalls as you would expect from a Wesley Ward juvenile, she led from the off to record an impressive 6l victory at Keeneland.
A sole victory was all Campanelle needed to have her cherry-ripe for the Royal Meeting, so there is little to worry about as far as inexperience is concerned, and with her trainer taking the race on three occasions, she’s in good hands to take the Group 2 and 20+ Ten To Follow points.
Suesa - Commonwealth Cup - Francois Rohaut
It’s perhaps an indication of the strength (or lack thereof) amongst the UK and Ireland-based three-year-old sprinters that two overseas raiders look set to be prominent in the Commonwealth Cup market.
Take nothing away from Francois Rohaut’s filly though, she’s unbeaten in four outings, including two Group 3 successes this season. While her Royal Ascot target is a step up again, she was mightily impressive in brushing aside a next-time-out Listed winner at Chantilly last time out.
Her handler has a very respectable 23% strike-rate when bringing runners across for Group races, so his representative is worth considering.
Rip Van Lips - Gold Cup - Andreas Suborics
Granted, he might go off at a three-figure dividend and he has Stradivarius to contend with, but a placed effort in the Gold Cup would still return a decent haul, with second place offering up a further 12 bonus points.
Four horses sent off at an SP of 33/1 or bigger have finished in the Gold Cup frame in the last seven years, while Vazirabad and Top Trip both finished second for European trainers in the last decade.
Rip Van Lips appeared to improve for a step back up to 2m when taking a Hoppegarten Group 2 last time out. His trainer is adamant that there is improvement in him, despite being five-years-old, having missed over a year earlier in his career. He might be a wild card choice for many stables.
Entries are now open for the Tote Ten To Follow Royal Ascot Mini Game! Play for just £5 with prizes available to be won all the way down to 500th place. Enter before noon on Tuesday 15th June to be in with a chance.