The Week Ahead – What Racing To Focus On This Week
It’s a slightly quieter week of racing this week, as we gear up for Royal Ascot next week. There’s still some eye-catching racing to look forward to though, and we’ve highlighted the pick of the action.
See all the key meetings and races this week in our weekly guide ↓
Although there’s six meetings to get involved in, there isn’t too much in the way of quality racing to start off the week. The pick of the action looks to be at Pontefract this evening, with a feature Class 2 race (7:00) on the card. Charging Thunder has been runner-up in all three starts this season but looks set to go off favourite for the race.
William Buick is the current leader in the Flat Jockeys Championship and he’s at Lingfield this afternoon for a trio of rides:
- Simply Sondheim (1:53)
- Grace Angel (2:28)
- Dutugamunu (3:03)
Elsewhere there’s further flat racing at Gowran Park and Windsor, whilst there’s jumps action at Listowel and Southwell. There’s also Group 2 action over in Germany, as Cologne hosts the 187th Sparkasse KolnBonn Union-Rennen (3:55).
Just the four meetings on Tuesday, but there’s a good-looking evening card at Chelmsford to get stuck into. The feature is the Class 2 Racing With Pride Handicap (7:20), which according to the bookies looks set to be fought out between John & Thady Gosden’s Peter The Great and John Mackie’s Sharpcliff.
Elsewhere there’s some eye-catching runners at Salisbury – none more so than Sunrise Valley (3:45) for Epsom Derby winning trainer Sir Michael Stoute, who has booked Ryan Moore for the ride.
There’s two other flat meetings on Tuesday, one in the afternoon at Brighton, with the other one an evening card at Wetherby.
Wednesday brings the first Group action of the week as Cork hosts the Group 3 Munster Oaks (7:10). La Petite Coco signed off last season with a Group 2 victory over Love in the Blandford Stakes and will be a popular choice for punters here, but there are plenty of other big names in the mix, including Ger Lyons’ Thunder Kiss and A P O’Brien’s Lily Pond.
Also on the Cork card is the Listed Midsummer Sprint Stakes (6:40), which could feature a couple of previous winners in the race – Make A Challenge (2020) and Logo Hunter (2021). The impressive Gustavus Weston also looks set to line up in what looks set to be a cracker of a race!
There’s a further six races away from Cork, with flat action at Hamilton, Haydock, Kempton and Yarmouth, whilst jumps action goes to post at Fontwell and Wexford.
The best action on Thursday is over in Ireland again as Leopardstown hosts the Group 3 Ballycorus Stakes (6:15). Recent Amethyst Stakes scorer Pretreville and Phoenix Stakes second Dr Zempf will take on last year’s winner Real Appeal and it’s difficult to say which way this race will go.
There’s also Listed action at Newbury in the form of the Greatwood British EBF Stakes (registered as the Abingdon Stakes – 2:40), which has been won by some classy sorts in the past, including 2012 Irish Oaks winner Great Heavens and 2018 Irish Oaks winner Sea Of Class. Life Of Dreams (2nd) and Ching Shih (3rd) finished behind Emily Upjohn in the Musidora Stakes and will no doubt be in the mix, but there’s plenty of other interesting runners to note, including Crystal Estrella and Golden Lyra.
Elsewhere there’s Flat action at Haydock, Nottingham and Yarmouth, whilst Uttoxeter hosts the sole jumps meeting on the day.
Last year’s Hampton Court Stakes winner Mohaafeth is entered in the Listed Ganton Stakes at York (3:30), along with Charlie Appleby’s Valiant Prince and recent York scorer Cruyff Turn. This could be one of the final races to give us clues ahead of Royal Ascot so is certainly one to watch.
There’s also a 7f maiden (1:45) at Sandown which is well worth keeping an eye on. The race was won by a certain Native Trail last year, who has been a virtually unstoppable force ever since!
There’s further flat action to be had at Chepstow and Goodwood, whilst jumps fans are treated to a couple of cards at Aintree and Newton Abbot.
All in all, it’s a bit of a quiet Saturday in Britain as racing gears up for Royal Ascot. There’s still a couple of Listed races to look forward to:
- Grand Cup Stakes (3:05 York)
- Scurry Stakes (2:50 Sandown)
There’s another three flat meetings to get stuck into at Bath, Chester and Leicester, plus a couple of jumps fixtures at Hexham and Worcester.
We close the week with four meetings, with the pick of the action coming from Salisbury. The feature race on the card is the Listed Cathedral Stakes (3:50), a race which has thrown up a star or two over the years. None more so than Sakhee’s Secret, who won the race in 2007 and followed up in the July Cup – he was later crowned the Champion 3-y-o sprinter on turf.
Elsewhere there’s flat action at Doncaster and Gowran Park, with Downpatrick hosting the sole jumps fixture.