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2019 Prince Of Wales’s Stakes tips - How the top five stack up in Royal Ascot thriller

Magical winning the Fillies' & Mares' on Champions Day last season.

We compare the top five contenders in this year’s Prince Of Wales’s Stakes to try and find out who will win what promises to be the race of the week at Royal Ascot on Wednesday 19th June.

The Prince Of Wales’s Stakes has always been one of the most looked-forward to races during Royal Ascot, taking pride of place on day two of this world-famous meeting. This year’s race, however, could turn out to be a real battle for the ages, after five superstars were confirmed in the final field for the 2019 renewal.

To try and figure out which of the top five contenders will come out on top in this year’s Prince Of Wales’s Stakes, our expert has decided to compare the five – looking at how they stack up in eight different categories, awarding each a score out of five in each category, before tallying up the scores to see who receives the highest score.

2019 Prince Of Wales’s Stakes Tips

Last Season


🥇 Sea Of Class - 5 🥇
Magical - 4
Masar - 3
Waldgeist - 2
Crystal Ocean – 1

Sea Of Class (5/2 William Hill) enjoyed a wonderful first season in training last term, winning four of her six seasonal starts. Back-to-back Listed wins were followed by memorable victories in the Yorkshire and Irish Oaks, before William Haggas’ three-year-old came within half-a-length of upsetting Enable in the Prix de l’Arc de Triomphe.

Magical also went toe-to-toe with Enable, losing out narrowly at the Breeders’ Cup after winning the Fillies’ & Mares’ here on Champions Day. Masar claimed a famous victory in the Derby, while also scoring a runaway triumph over Roaring Lion in the Craven. Waldgeist secured one Group One at home in France, leaving Crystal Ocean to bring up the rear, despite losing out narrowly in the King George to Poet’s Word.

Sea Of Class (right) powers home to beat Epsom winner, Forever Together (left) in the Irish Oaks.


This Season


🥇 Magical - 5 🥇
Waldgeist - 4
Crystal Ocean - 3
Sea Of Class - 2
Masar – 2

There’s no competition in this category really, as Magical (11/4 888Sport) has been head-and-shoulders above her rivals so far in 2019. Aidan O’Brien’s filly has secured three Grouped victories already, including a superb Group One triumph in the Tattersalls Gold Cup, where she destroyed some highly-rated rivals by seven lengths.

Waldgeist romped to victory in the Prix Ganay, comfortably seeing off two classy rivals in Study Of Man and Ghaayaith. Crystal Ocean has gone unbeaten so far in 2019, winning easily enough at Sandown and Newbury. Sea Of Class and Masar will be making their first appearance of the season at Royal Ascot, meaning they can only secure the minimum score.

Group One Wins


🥇 Waldgeist - 5 🥇
Sea Of Class - 4
Magical - 3
Masar - 2
Crystal Ocean – 1

Andre Fabre’s charge has won three top level honours at home in France. Waldgeist (6/1 Ladbrokes) ended his two-year-old by beating Best Solution in the Criterium de Saint-Cloud and edged out Coronet in the Grand Prix de Saint-Cloud during a purple patch last summer. Waldgeist’s Prix Ganay triumph was easily a career best effort, helping him edge past the two fillies in this category.

Magical and Sea Of Class both have two Group Ones to their name, with Sea Of Class earning a higher score thanks to her Classic triumph at the Curragh. Masar’s Derby win remains his only top level honour, while Crystal Ocean still waits for his first Group One win.

Rating


🥇 Crystal Ocean - 5 🥇
Magical - 4
Sea Of Class - 3
Waldgeist - 3
Masar – 1

Strangely enough, considering his score in the previous section, Crystal Ocean (5/1 William Hill) is the highest-rated horses in this year’s Prince Of Wales’s Stakes. Sir Michael Stoute’s five-year-old may still be awaiting the taste of top level success, but Crystal Ocean has finished  second in the St Leger, the King George and the Champion Stakes, winning all-but one of his last seven outings in lesser company, losing out to Enable on the all-weather at Kempton in September.

Magical’s heroics over the past 12 months have earned O’Brien’s filly a mark of 123, two pounds short of Crystal Ocean. Sea Of Class and Waldgeist share the same rating of 122, leaving Masar to bring up the rear with his paltry mark of 121.

Trip


🥇 Magical - 5 🥇
Sea Of Class - 4
Crystal Ocean – 3
Waldgeist – 2
Masar - 1

Magical boasts the best record over ten furlongs, with all three of her Grouped victories this season coming over that trip. Over distances between a mile and a-mile-and-a-half, Magical is unbeaten in four starts and the fact that she can comfortably see out 12 furlongs makes her an extremely dangerous proposition in what is a very high-quality contest.

Sea Of Class’s running style means dropping back in trip won’t be an issue and William Haggas’ filly impressed during two Listed victories over ten furlongs last term. Crystal Ocean has won Grouped races over this distance, but has been found wanting for pace at times during his career. Waldgeist may have outstayed his rivals in the Prix Ganay, but there’s no doubting 12 furlongs is his optimum trip. Although it should certainly suit, Masar has never run over this distance before.

Crystal Ocean strides clear to win the Hardwicke Stakes at Royal Ascot 2018.

Course Form


🥇Crystal Ocean - 5 🥇
Magical - 4
Masar - 3
Waldgeist – 3
Sea Of Class - 1

Crystal Ocean has clocked up the most appearance here in Berkshire, running at Ascot four times in total, twice during the Royal meeting. Sir Michael Stoute’s charge secured his only victory here in the Hardwicke Stakes last year, but a pair of seconds in the King George and the Champions Stakes are results not to be sniffed at.

Magical’s only trip to Berkshire resulted in victory, as O’Brien’s raider was crowned the top Filly on Champions Day last year. Masar and Waldgeist were both beaten on their only appearances at Ascot, running well enough in defeat in the Chesham Stakes and the Cumberland Lodge Stakes respectively. Sea Of Class will make her Ascot debut next week.

Ground


🥇 Waldgeist - 5 🥇
Crystal Ocean - 4
Magical - 3
Masar - 2
Sea Of Class – 1

The ground is already good-to-soft at Ascot and, with plenty more rain set to come over the next few days, we could start this year’s Royal meeting on genuinely soft ground. With every drop of rain that falls, Waldgeist’s prospects grow ever stronger. Fabre’s raider has secured the majority of his victories on good-to-soft or soft ground and his extra staying ability will be emphasised on a testing surface.

Crystal Ocean has also proven himself on soft ground and would enjoy an attritional Prince Of Wales’s. Magical won on Champions Day when the ground we genuinely soft and Masar has experience running on this kind of going. Sea Of Class, on the other hand, bypassed the Oaks at Epsom on account of the soft ground and William Haggas will be hoping the course drains significantly before the day of the race.

Masar (right) scoots clear to win the Derby last season.


Trainer Form


🥇 Masar - 5 🥇
Sea Of Class - 4
Crystal Ocean - 3
Waldgeist - 2
Magical – 1

Charlie Appleby enjoyed the best season of his career in 2018 and his boys in blue have picked up where they left off this year. Appleby’s troops have been striking at 36% here in Britain, not to mention their early season success out in Meydan. He travels to Ascot in excellent form, having won with five of his last 13 runners in the past two weeks, a great source of encouragement for Masar's (9/1 888Sport) supporters.

William Haggas’ horses have also been flying this season, winning with 25% of his runners since the start of the new campaign. Sir Michael Stoute boasts a slightly higher winning percentage than Haggas but he’s had almost 70 less runners than his British rival in 2019. Andre Fabre’s 54 winners this term have come at a strike rate of 23%, leaving the great Aidan O’Brien to bring up the rear, having won with just 20% of his runners so far this season.

Total


🏆 MAGICAL - 29 🏆
Waldgeist - 26
Crystal Ocean - 25
Sea Of Class - 24
Masar – 19

MAGICAL performed consistently well throughout all of the categories, barring her trainer's seasonal form, which isn’t the most significant of the eight categories. Aidan O’Brien’s filly brings the best seasonal form to the table, she’s proven over the trip, on soft ground and boasts extremely good course form, having won on Champions Day last season. She looks most likely to come out on top in this titanic tussle.

Magical waltzing to victory in the Tattersalls Gold Cup.


French raider Waldgeist comes next, despite the worry that this trip might be a little on the short side. The way he brushed two quality operators aside to secure his third Group One in the Ganay was extremely impressive and the thud of rain thundering down on the course will sound like music to Andre Fabre’s ears.

Sir Michael Stoute’s decision to head for the Prince Of Wales’s Stakes over a return to the Hardwicke looks well grounded, especially if the Met Office’s predictions are to be believed. Sea Of Class could hold the highest amount of star quality and potential of the five protagonists, but the time she’s spent off the track, combined with significant ground concerns, mean she only sits fourth in terms of score.

Masar brings up the rear, collecting just 19 points over the eight categories. No Derby winner can ever be discounted, but it’s clear Charlie Appleby’s charge has a little bit to find on his highly-rated rivals and there’s a big fitness doubt lingering over last year’s King of Epsom.




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2019 Prince Of Wales’s Stakes tips - How the top five stack up in Royal Ascot thriller

We compare the top five contenders in this year’s Prince Of Wales’s Stakes to try and find out who will win what promises to be the race of the week at Royal Ascot on Wednesday 19th June.

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