Royal Ascot Day five – our man on Stradivarius and the Gold Cup, Oisin Murphy and Saturday's action

FRANKIE Dettori is human. That’s what we learnt at Royal Ascot 2021. 

Racing’s premier showman was fantastic in winning action yet again, but will have kicked himself for getting Stradivarius in a hopeless position in the Ascot Gold Cup. 

Whether he would have won – and made it four Gold Cups – with a clear run is subjective, but it’s fair to say Subjectivist was a very worthy winner for Mark Johnston and the terrifically modest Joe Fanning. He’s a demon from the front and a bit more wicked than he makes out! 

The Gold Cup was of course the feature event over five days which mixed glorious sunshine and lashing rain. It’s Great Britain. What do you expect? 

On the track it was a week of high class racing. 

Palace Pier might not have been electric but he was still supreme in the Queen Anne and I can’t wait to see him step up to a mile and a quarter. I think he might be even better over that trip. 

Oxted showed the ‘Fallon Factor’ lives on as young Cieren was superb on him in the King’s Stand, while Poetic Flare was tough of the tough in the St James’s Palace Stakes for Jim Bolger. What a colt. 

Then what about Love’s comeback in the Prince of Wales’s? Ryan Moore gave her a peach from the front and she’s a filly to enjoy for the rest of the season.  

On the jockey from well done to Laura Pearson and Marco Ghiani for getting on the score sheet at Royal Ascot. Both are top people with plenty of skill. 

So what might happen on the final day? 

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Matt on Oisin Murphy

"It’s the person that overcomes adversity that is the true champion”. 

The betting suggested Campanelle would be awarded yesterday’s Commonwealth Cup in the stewards’ room. But I’d have let the result to stand.

Campanelle was ridden by Frankie Dettori and original winner Dragon Symbol by Oisin Murphy.  There is no doubt Dragon Symbol edged right, but in a tough battle Campanelle had 2f to go past and never did. At the line Murphy’s mount was going away.

On the basis British rules favour the best horse in the race – in other words the winner – then I would have allowed the situation to stay as it was.

Murphy bounced back straight away to bang in Alcohol Free in the Coronation Stakes. It was a cracking ride.

He’d be forgiven, though, if he had a glass of champagne when he got home! What a day for the champion rider.

ITV coverage on Day 5 gets under way with the Listed Chesham Stakes over 7f for juveniles. Oisin Murphy is very keen on the chance of MASEKELA and that's good enough for me!

The youngster won on debut at Goodwood in decent style and is bred to love this extra furlong. Any ground should be all right and must have eachway claims for Andrew Balding. 

Next is the Group 3 Jersey Stakes for 3yo over 7f. Dubai dominates the top of the betting and NAVAL CROWN really should run well for Charlie Appleby and William Buick.

Used as a pacemaker in the 2000 Guineas he ran a corker to finish fourth and the drop to this trip should be ideal. He goes on any ground and has track form. A huge eachway chance. 

Up to Group 2 class next with the Hardwicke Stakes over 1m4f. This is wide open. ILLARAAB is up in class but he just keeps on winning and might be up to this for William Haggas and Tom Marquand.

Stepping up to this trip at York last time he improved again to land a handicap in great style and he has the ability to go on any surface. Has to find another 5lb here but might well do so. 

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After the Hardwicke some top grade sport in the Group 1 Diamond Stakes over 6f. GLEN SHIEL was a big priced winner of Champions Sprint at Ascot in October and he's decent odds again for Archie Watson and Hollie Doyle.

That said, I reckon he's got strong eachway claims here and ratings wise he's bang in the mix. Had a warm up over at the Curragh when fourth behind Gustavus Weston.  

One of the big betting races of the week comes in the Wokingham Stakes over 6f.

GULLIVER is a massive price and is not easy to predict. That said, he's down to a very handy mark now of 99 and can never be ignored in these races.

Danny Tudhope rides for David O'Meara and my hope was not disgraced at York last time, suggesting at the age of seven he can still produce a telling display. 

Handicap company also in the penultimate contest in a 1m2f event for 3yo. KING FRANKEL should have won at Epsom last time so even though he's up another 3lb here he is not out of it. The track seemed to be against him at the Derby fixture and he remains a promising handicapper for Mark Johnston. Frankie Dettori is an interesting jockey booking. 

Finally, Royal Ascot 2021 closes with the Queen Alexandra Stakes over an extended 2m5f. Not an easy get out. I see no reason why the Chester Cup winner FALCON EIGHT won't take all the beating for Dermot Weld and Frankie Dettori. The trip should be no issue and he brings in plenty of class with a BHA rating of 110. 

Enjoy and good luck! 

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