Hugo Palmer sends Gifted Master to Royal Ascot with hopes of landing a place in the Diamond Jubilee Stakes
"It's a fascinating race, and it's lovely to be involved in one of the Group 1 events on the opening day of the Royal Meeting, but I do feel the very best we can hope for is an each-way squeak."
15:40 - Gifted Master
This is clearly a massive step-up for Gifted Master, but he's a multiple stakes winner who has been placed in Group 2 company several times, and his owner was keen for him to run in one of the Group 1 sprints at Royal Ascot.
Looking at both races, it seems to me that The Diamond Jubilee has enormous strength in depth, and despite the presence of Lady Aurelia and Battaash, I thought the King's Stand was the race which offered up the best opportunity of a place, and with an official rating of 112 he doesn't have an enormous amount to find to finish third, which is our realistic goal.
It would require a career-best performance to achieve that, but he produced a lifetime best when winning a competitive handicap at Newmarket on Guineas weekend, so it's not like his prime is behind him.
Lady Aurelia is a phenomenally fast filly, and I can't imagine anything being able to lead her, although we're drawn fairly close to her. It's a fascinating race, and it's lovely to be involved in one of the Group 1 events on the opening day of the Royal Meeting, but I do feel the very best we can hope for is an each-way squeak, although he is an each-way price, is in great form and looks tremendous, so fingers crossed he can find a career best and get in the frame.
Royal Ascot offers from Betfair - cash back, free bets and minimum bet limits
Betfair has a brand new offer for Royal Ascot 2018. This means you can get money back as cash if your horse goes odds on in-play but ends up losing. This unique offer will cover all Royal Ascot races during the week (T&Cs apply).
Well also be offering a free bet of up to £25 for every Sportsbook winner at 3/1 or bigger on the Ascot races throughout the week (T&Cs apply).
And Ascot sees the introduction of a new minimum bet limit of £500 for all Class 1&2 races, available to all customers. The guarantee will be available from 10am each day there are qualifying races, T&Cs apply.