Today's Follow The Money focuses on the third day of what looks set to be a rather wet Royal Ascot...
"The support (for Defrocked) is eye-catching for a well-bred gelding with a huge amount of potential and he looks worth chancing today at attractive odds with ¼ odds for four places on offer."
We start off with a lay in the 15:05 Tercentenary Stakes where Abdon looks a suitable candidate for opposing. Abdon opened up as 4.1 favourite but is looking less certain for that title come race time having drifted to 4.57/2. A winner on debut for Sir Michael Stoute in testing conditions at Newbury the ground looks sure to suit this three-year-old colt, but it is the strength of today's field which may be his undoing. Abdon made a pleasing comeback bid in a Listed race at Newmarket but finished a length-and-a-quarter behind Hawkbill, also making his re-appearance, who re-opposes today. Both should have come on for that run and market confidence seems to be wavering that Abdon can reverse fortunes. As if that wasn't enough of a doubt for punters then Blue De Vega certainly looks a big danger. A third in the Irish 2000 Guineas looks to be the best piece of form on offer and despite a 4lb penalty to contend with today Blue De Vega's connections seem confident of a big run from their stable star. The field looks full of danger and it is hardly surprising that 3/1 odds are being avoided. A lay is advised with a strong field on our side.
In the 15:40 Ribblesdale Stakes there is continued strong support for Aiden O'Brien's Even Song, matched at a high of 5.24/1 she now trades at just 3.65. The filly built on her debut run at Dundalk when winning decisively on Good to Yielding ground at Leopardstown next time out and again impressed when making a decent comeback when third in the Pretty Polly stakes at Newmarket. She finished her race off well that day and left the impression that this step up in trip to a mile-and-a-half would benefit. Even Song can be expected to have come on for that run and with the benefit of the added distance, on ground that looks likely to suit, her chance looks obvious.
Finally in the 17:00 Britannia Stakes we come across our Each-Way selection and Jamie Osbourne's Defrocked fits the bill. Having been matched at 14.5 he now trades at 9.89/1. A winner over a mile-and-a-half on Good to Soft, under today's jockey Jamie Spencer, gives punters confidence that this three-year-old gelding should handle today's conditions. He was an impressive winner last time out at Doncaster despite hanging badly right in the closing stages. It is interesting that Jamie Spencer has chosen Defrocked over Monteverdi and he clearly believes this is the more talented horse and his experience in the saddle could be invaluable today on what looks a difficult ride. The support is eye-catching for a well-bred gelding with a huge amount of potential and he looks worth chancing today at attractive odds with ¼ odds for four places on offer.
Lay Abdon @ 4.57/2 in the 15:05 Tercentenary Stakes
Back Even Song @ 3.65 in the 15:40 Ribblesdale Stakes
Back Defrocked Each-Way @ 9.89/1 in the 17:00 Britannia Stakes
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Follow The Money May P/L
Profit on month: 20.42pts