King’s Stand 2020 preview – Get all the Royal Ascot winners

Sprint king Battaash looks set to make a spirited defence of his Nunthorpe Stakes crownSprint king Battaash looks set to make a spirited defence of his Nunthorpe Stakes crown

The Group 1 King’s Stand Stakes is one of the highlights of the opening day of this year’s Royal Ascot. Usually contested by the fastest equine machines on four legs and showcasing some of the best sprinters around the world, it was won last year by Godolphin superstar Blue Point who beat Battaash.  The runner-up is again likely to be a warm order to go one better this time around but he faces some stiff competition from the likes of Abbaye winner Glass Slippers and Hello Youmzain. Read Christopher Loader’s thoughts on how the race will pan out here…

Flying favourite Battaash the one to beat

Battaash will be a banker for many racing fans as he is the best sprinter in training. The son of Dark Angel has won many of the top European sprint races, including the Nunthorpe, Abbaye, and King George Stakes at Goodwood. Despite this, he has always been a quirky sort, playing up at York on a couple of occasions in a manner ultimately affecting his chances. Furthermore, Ascot has not always been a happy hunting ground, with him coming up short twice behind Blue Point. This year, there is no Blue Point to worry about and some of his old rivals such as Mabs Cross have also been retired. If trainer Charlie Hills has him spot-on, he has the class to produce a knockout performance and will be hard to beat in the King’s Stand Stakes, whether he’s watched live or on our Ascot live streaming services.

Glass Slippers the big danger

The young pretender waiting in the wings is Glass Slippers, trained by Kevin Ryan. She won her last two starts at Longchamp, including the Group 1 Prix de L’Abbaye. That was an impressive performance on testing ground and if the ground is on the soft side at Royal Ascot 2020, she could enhance her claims further for King’s Stand Stakes glory.  She could be one to focus on for any Royal Ascot free bets as her best form might well come later in the year.

A’Ali is an interesting contender if he takes his chance against the older horses. He was a winner last year at Royal Ascot when taking the Group 2 Norfolk Stakes for Simon Crisford. Afterwards he was able to maintain his form notching up two further successes at Deauville and Doncaster. However, he disappointed on his comeback run at Newcastle and has plenty to prove now.

Another Hills contender

Charlie Hills could target another of his stars sprinters Equilateral at this year’s King Stand Stakes. Like his stablemate Battaash, he always hasn’t delivered on potential after he put in a commanding display as a three-year-old at Doncaster. The son of Equiano ran well in the winter at Meydan winning a handicap and finishing second in a Group 2. Equilateral always seems to run his best races fresh and the break in between races could be ideal for him to sneak a place.

If Ballydoyle send some candidates across the Irish Sea, they are most likely to be represented by the consistent fillies of Fairyland and So Perfect. They are hard to separate on form but they will not be featuring among my Royal Ascot tips

But it is impossible not to get away from Battaash as he brings the highest level of form into the race and on his day is the best sprinter in the world.