We've arrived at the final day of Royal Ascot, and Kevin Blake has a further three tips for you to consider, including a strong selection in the lucky last...
"The test that this race presents should suit him well and the rain won’t hold any fears for him. He looks to have a great chance of being the final winner of Royal Ascot 2021."
This is it! The fifth and last day of Royal Ascot is in sight and we'll be looking to finish the meeting with a bang. After a week of weather guessing, it looks like the rain boys have finally copped, with the deluge having belatedly arrived on Friday morning.
Ascot drains quickly, but it looks like the ground is going to be testing by Saturday and that is the basis I will work off. We've been warning listeners of the Racing Only Bettor Podcast all week that selections may change if the weather intervened after we recorded and that is what has happened, I'm afraid.
Menuisier runner set for Wonderful race in Hardwicke
The Hardwicke Stakes (15:40) is my first port of call and the one I like is the David Menuisier-trained Wonderful Tonight.
The daughter of Le Havre found a quite remarkable amount of improvement last season, progressing from being beaten in a Listed race to winning two Group 1 races. The second of those Group 1 wins came over this course and distance on testing ground in the British Champions Fillies & Mares Stakes last October.
That she is proven on this type of surface is a major plus and while this is her seasonal reappearance, her connections are unlikely to be pitching her into this company if they expect her to need the run. There isn't a huge amount of pace in the race, so the fact that Wonderful Tonight is an uncomplicated prominent ride is a positive. She looks to have an excellent chance.
Draw and conditions look ideal for Irish raider
The Diamond Jubilee Stakes (16:20) is the main event of the day and a chance is taken on the Paddy Twomey-trained Sonaiyla. The five-year-old showed remarkable progression last season from winning a handicap off 86 up to finishing a close third in the Flying Five Stakes at the Curragh.
This season has seen her build back to that sort of level again, finishing third in a Group 2 at the Curragh prior to returning there to win a Group 3 last time. On both occasions she lost ground at start, most notably when getting very badly bumped by a rival on her latest start. It was such a bad bump that she did notably well to recover and win the race. The promise of that performance was clear and she looks to have more to offer.
Unlike many of her rivals, she is proven on heavy ground and over a longer trip than this, so she'll be better equipped than most if it turns into a slog. Her low draw also looks ideal, as most of the pace in the race is drawn in that part of the track. She looks likely to run a big race.
Test looks ideal for Falcon in meeting finale
I've spent a long time mulling over the Queen Alexandra Stakes (18:10) and despite flirtations with The Grand Visir, I've decided to commit to the Dermot Weld-trained Falcon Eight.
The six-year-old has long threatened to be a high-class stayer and while there have been a few false dawns over the years, his winning performance in the Chester Cup suggests that he is finally putting it all together.
Dropped in after a tardy start, he looked to have plenty to do with half a circuit to run, but he made powerful headway to challenge out wide and powered clear in the closing stages to win very well.
That winning performance came off a mark of 104 and his new mark of 110 looks low if anything. The test that this race presents should suit him well and the rain won't hold any fears for him. He looks to have a great chance of being the final winner of Royal Ascot 2021.
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