Royal Ascot 2020 Royal Hunt Cup Tips – Our guide to the big-field handicap
The Royal Hunt Cup is one of the feature handicaps at Royal Ascot and it takes place on Gold Cup day. It’s normally one of the more difficult races to find the winner with a history of outsiders being successful. The last winning favourite came in 2009 and the race suits younger horses with all winners since 2015 aged five or less. Here are Christopher Loader’s thoughts on the big race.
Royal Hunt Cup 2020 Eyecatchers
Looking through the entries, Motatham catches the eye. The son of Showcasing was a very comfortable winner at Newmarket on his return for William Haggas and handicapper has raised him 8lb for that, which looks fair given the style with which won. If he gets a good draw, he’ll definitely be on my shortlist.
Royal Hunt Cup 2020 Last year’s Winner
AFAAK also holds an entry in the races for Charlie Hills. The six-year-old won this race last year when ridden by Jim Crowley. After that win he went to York and finished a respectable fourth but then struggled with his lofty rating. At the six-day stage, Cieren Fallon has been booked to ride and he will be able to claim a handy 3lb with his apprentice allowance, so will feature in plenty of Royal Ascot Day 2 tips
ALRAJAA is likely to have to carry top weight if declared for John Gosden. The son of Dubawi could be a Group horse running in a handicap as his form from last season was extremely impressive after winning his last four starts. However, a major concern would be that he is yet to experience a race of this nature but connections must be confident of his chances as Jim Crowley has already been booked.
BELL ROCK is another horse that could be popular in the Royal Hunt Cup markets for Andrew Balding. He won his seasonal reappearance at Newmarket denying Ouzo in a photo finish. The four-year-old ran in many high-class races last year and took advantage of running in a handicap last time. He is another horse that could have a major say if declared for the race and there will be plenty of Royal Ascot Free Bets riding on him.
Royal Ascot 2020 Others To Consider
ZHUI FENGis now starting to become very well handicapped for Amanda Perrett. The son of Invincible Spirit won this race in 2017 and this victory came off a 6lb higher mark. Since then his career has been up and down but he is still very capable on his day.
WILLIE JOHN would be an interesting contender for Roger Varian. He has been frustrating after not living up to expectations in Group company. Nevertheless, those efforts were over a longer distance and he would be dropping down significantly in trip. If he was given a prominent ride by Andrea Atzeni he might be able to use his stamina for a positive effect and given his propensity to make all, he should be easy to pick put on our live streaming service.
The Royal Hunt Cup is always a tough race to find the winner but Willie John is my main selection for the race as he could be effective over a stiff mile. Motatham would be the other horse I’m keen to back as his Newmarket win was very convincing and he looks like he could run well in a race of this type.