Royal Ascot

Royal Ascot Each-Way Tips: Take aim at 25/1 shot Fleurman

Royal Ascot
Mark Milligan has a pair of selections at Royal Ascot on Tuesday

Mark Milligan will be previewing the big handicaps throughout the week at Royal Ascot, starting with a pair on Tuesday, including one at a big price...

  • Mark has a pair of selections in the staying handicaps

  • Olly Murphy runner overpriced

  • Appleby team hitting red-hot form at right time


For flat racing enthusiasts, it really doesn't get much better than Royal Ascot. For me, this is the best meeting of the year, bar none.

Obviously, the jumps season is geared around Cheltenham and those four days in March are spectacular in their own right, but the jumps season is well into the rear-view mirror now and with the weather hopefully set fair for the next five days, we get to see some of the best horses from all around the world plying their trade at flat racing's Olympics.

The Group races will obviously take centre stage this week, but there is something for everyone at Royal Ascot and, if fiendishly tricky big-field handicaps are more your thing, then you're well catered for too.

While the top-class Group horses will be front and centre, I'm going to dive into those handicaps in this column throughout the week, where hopefully we can find plenty of each-way value, particularly as we'll have enhanced place terms on all those races on the Sportsbook.

Royal Ascot - 17:00: Back Fleurman E/W @ 25/126.00


Just harking back to Cheltenham for a moment, the 2m 4f Ascot Stakes Handicap (17:00) wouldn't look out of place if the runners had ten flights of hurdles to negotiate, and with the likes of Willie Mullins, Nicky Henderson and Olly Murphy-trained horses towards the fore in terms of Timeform ratings, those who prefer jumps racing to the flat should be in their element here!

Joking aside, though, these kind of staying events on the flat have been farmed by jumps trainers in the recent past and the case for the Mullins-trained Bring On The Night looks an obvious one.

Bring On The Night has only made one appearance in the last year and that was when second to Coltrane in this corresponding race last year, form that looks very strong in the light of that one's subsequent performances in Group company.

A 4lb rise for that effort looks a very fair one and everything seems set for another good run from the 6-y-o Closutton inmate, though his current price of 2/1 makes little appeal to me in this sort of contest.

Royal Ascot 2022 field and screen.jpg

There are plenty who'll dismiss the Olly Williams-trained Fleurman on account of his modest hurdles form compared to the likes of Bring On The Night and Ahorsewithnoname, and that's the only reason I can come up with as to why he's as big as 25/126.00, because his flat form is just about as good as any on offer.

Granted, his best efforts have come on the all-weather rather than turf, particularly of late, but Ascot is a track that tends to play well to those with synthetic form and his runs at Newcastle and Wolverhampton in the spring were those of a horse who could well have a big staying handicap in him this summer.

It's not as though as he doesn't have turf form either, with a pair of Salisbury wins to his name last season, albeit in a much lower grade than this. However, it's worth noting he simply looks a much-improved horse this year and is a sporting each-way stab at a big price with six places on offer for each-way bettors.

Back Fleurman, E/W, 6 Places @ 25/126.00 in 17:00 at Royal Ascot

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Royal Ascot - 18:10: Back Ruling Dynasty E/W @ 7/18.00

It's jumping to the fore once again in the closing 1m 6f Copper Horse Handicap at 18:10, with that man Mullins providing Vauban and Absurde, who are both prominent in the market.

Vauban is clearly the pick, both on his hurdles form and the decent level he ran to on the flat when trained in France, but I had little interest in backing him at 7/42.75, for all he could prove a handicap blot off 101.

Charlie Appleby had a bit of a sticky patch earlier in the month, with plenty of his fancied runners being turned over, but his stable has hit form just at the right time and his current strike-rate of 35% suggests a big week is in the offing.

It could be that Ruling Dynasty is a little too inexperienced for a race this competitive on just his fourth start, but he could easily be the most talented in this line-up and I expect him to be plying his trade in Group races before the season is out.

He's done nothing wrong in novice contests on his last two starts and a mark of 97 could well underestimate him.

The selection was particularly impressive when bolting up at Haydock last time and his form stacks up well on Timeform ratings, with that organisation suggesting there'll be even more to come from him (currently rated 108p).

Back Ruling Dynasty, E/W, 5 Places @ 7/18.00, in 18:10 at Royal Ascot

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Kevin Blake has two tips for Day 1 at Royal Ascot - read those here!


Watch Racing... Only Bettor Royal Ascot Day 1 Preview here:

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Mark's P/L

Staked: 397 Returns: 487.10 P/L: +90.10

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