Hugo Palmer: The verdict on my quartet of runners on day three of Royal Ascot

Will Hugo enjoy his Thursday in Berkshire?
Will Hugo enjoy his Thursday in Berkshire?

Apphia, Colibri, Via Serendipity and son of Frankel, Majoris, all go for Hugo Palmer on a busy Thursday at Royal Ascot. here are his thoughts on the quartet's chances...


"Via Serendipity should be able to find plenty of cover here, the fast ground is in his favour, and the Newbury form took a boost when Barney Roy won the St James's Palace on Tuesday. They both have chances granted good fortune, and I'm sure we haven't seen the best of either of them."

15:40 - Apphia

Apphia arrives here very light on experience for such a race having made her debut as recently as the end of April. She was just touched off on her debut at Sandown and held on gamely to dead heat at Goodwood four weeks ago. She clearly has plenty to prove on the back of a maiden win, but is ready for another race, and there are very few opportunities for a filly like her to gain black type in June, so we take our chance. The positives are that she will improve for a step up in trip from ten furlongs, and will like the fast ground. She may be an outsider, but will give it her best shot.


17:00 - Colibri & Via Serendipity

Colibri was always going to make the line-up, but I had to sweat to see if Via Serendipity had sneaked in at the bottom of the weights. In an ideal world, we would have had one drawn on either side, but they've been handed stalls 32 and 28 respectively, so now we're hoping that high is the place to be.

Colibri started off in the Esher Cup at Sandown and looked like he was coming to win when taking a late bump from the runner-up which cost him vital momentum. That shows he's on a fair mark, but there are few harder handicaps than the Britannia to win, and it goes without saying that he'll need his share of luck.

That comment also applies to Via Serendipity, who ran well in the Greenham Stakes on his return, and got lit up after seeing too much daylight when beaten at Newmarket last time. He should be able to find plenty of cover here, the fast ground is in his favour, and the Newbury form took a boost when Barney Roy won the St James's Palace on Tuesday. They both have chances granted good fortune, and I'm sure we haven't seen the best of either of them.


17:35 - Majoris

I'm trying something different with Majoris, who is fitted with blinkers and stepped up in trip. He won a Newmarket nursery over seven furlongs from the front last year, but those tactics didn't work for him on his turf return there, albeit facing a stiff task against subsequent Dante winner Permian. He's by Frankel out of a daughter of Oaks & Irish Oaks winner Alexandrova, and bred along similar lines to Derby fourth Eminent, so is worth a try at a mile-and-a-half. He'll be ridden more conservatively than he was at Newmarket, and if he takes to the blinkers and stays the trip, he could surprise a few.


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