Rhys Williams has analysed day one of Royal Ascot and has two selections at 50/1 and 100/1 in the King's Stand.
Bounced back with cheekpieces reapplied at Haydock
Ascot 15:40: Arecibo 0.5pt e/w 50/1
Arecibo benefitted from a very strong pace when finishing second in this race last year and I'm hoping he will do so again having run well last time at Haydock behind a couple of today's rivals.
He tracked the leader of the near side group that day but he was travelling so well that he went past him on the bridle with 1½ furlongs to go and had nothing to take him further into the race. He came under pressure just over a furlong out and looked to be in at least a share of the lead before not finishing the race off as strongly as the front pair, who had raced down the middle of the track, and finished third.
Since finishing second in last year's renewal when held up, they've generally ridden him handier and I'm not sure that's suited him as he's often finished weakly in that scenario. The one occasion they did hold him up was at York when he was hampered at the start and could never get into contention on a track that probably wasn't suitable for him.
Now back over a stiff five furlongs and with a likely very strong pace to close into I'm hoping they go back to holding him up and looking to deliver a very late challenge as I think that could be where he's seen to best effect.
There is a concern that he's drawn in stall three which may not be ideal if the going stick is any guide but he does have Winter Power and Khaadem to potentially drag him into the race on that side and I think he could once again run well in this race at a big price. Any 33/1 or bigger appeals.
Could pick up some of the pieces from a pace collapse
Ascot 15:40: Mondammej 0.5pt e/w 100/1
Mondammej didn't quite have the same length of time in the 'frequent eyecatcher without ever winning' bracket that Arecibo formerly did but after a collection of those performances he won two handicaps at Haydock last year and I think he might run above expectations stepping into Group 1 company for the first time today.
He finished just behind Arecibo at Haydock last time having raced in the group down the middle of the track. He looked to be a little outpaced early on but ran on well late on to finish fourth despite the ground possibly not being ideal.
I think he wants very quick ground and the combination of that, a very strong pace and a stiff finish could be the catalyst for a career best performance. He might put in a career best and still only finish in mid division but I think he could pick up more of the pieces than his price suggests and any 50/1 or bigger appeals.