It's the Betfair-sponsored King George today, but with that race attracting a stellar line-up we look elsewhere for our best bets...
It would be both a surprise and disappointment, in equal measure, were Carlton House not to prove far superior in this Group 2 contest.
Chil The Kite (14:45 Ascot) improved on his seasonal reappearance to win at Doncaster last time with a bit more in hand than the winning margin would suggest. He is, perhaps, not the most straightforward of types, as evidenced by shifting right under pressure when asked to quicken at Doncaster, but, for all that he hung, he did indeed quicken and he managed to register a cosy success. He would appear to have plenty of improvement still to come, significantly more so than quite a few of his rivals, and is capable of adding another victory to his tally.
The King George may well be the summer showpiece, but we will head over the jumps to find our second selection. Market Rasen host an interesting card and Donald McCain's Absinthe (14:50) is taken to land the listed handicap hurdle. Absinthe has always shaped as if holding ability and was a decent handicapper on the Flat when under the care of Walter Swinburn. However, like so many of McCain's recruits, he has managed to improve, winning on the level at the Chester May meeting before following up in a Bangor handicap hurdle. This race is much tougher, but it would be a surprise were there not more to come from Absinthe and he can land this valuable prize.
Carlton House (15.20 Ascot) may have tasted defeat at the Royal meeting, but he won't face a rival anywhere near as good as So You Think as he drops in both trip and grade to contest the Summer Mile. Ryan Moore produced the Queen's runner with a threatening challenge two furlongs out, but he could not sustain his effort to the line and eventually finished an honourable second to O'Brien's Australian import. There isn't much doubt that Carlton House stays ten furlongs, but given the turn of foot he possesses and the speed he supposedly shows at home connections feel that he may prove to be more effective at a mile. He is given the chance to prove that today, and it would be both a surprise and disappointment, in equal measure, were Carlton House not to prove far superior in this Group 2 contest.
Back Chil the Kite @ 4.03/1 in the 14:45 at Ascot
Back Absinthe @ 6.411/2 in the 14:50 at Market Rasen
Back Carlton House @ 1.794/5 in the 15:20 at Ascot
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