Royal Ascot is upon us and most layers will want to duck the Queen Anne Stakes at 14:30.
There's not a lot to lose, laying the shortest-priced favourite of the five days, Baaeed 1.232/9, but he does look nailed on.
He has won all seven of his starts, and was particularly impressive in despatching Real World, Chindit and Sir Busker in the Lockinge at Newbury last month.
If you really want to get involved, I suggest Order Of Australia as a place lay 4.57/2. He ended last year out of form and was a disappointing second-favourite in this race 12 months ago, coming eighth behind Sir Busker and Accidental Agent.
Persian Force has a stiff task in the Coventry
The hardest favourite to justify on the first day is Persian Force 4.216/5 in the Coventry at 15:05.
So much so, that it would be no surprise if Aidan O'Brien's Blackbeard was the jolly at the off.
Ryan Moore has ridden Blackbeard in all his races, and made all in the Group 3 Marble Hill at the Curragh last time, putting the favourite Tough Talk to the sword and winning by over three lengths.
Rossa Ryan is likely to track Blackbeard, if he uses the same tactics on Persian Force that won him his races at Doncaster over five and Newbury over six. This is a significantly stronger race, though, and the Richard Hannon-trained colt will do well to go past.
As layers of Persian Force, we have 16 running for us, including Blackbeard's stablemate Age Of Kings, Bradsell, Royal Scotsman, Rousing Encore and Scholarship. The more I look at the race, the more appealing Persian Force looks as a lay.
Man Of Promise lacks the speed he needs
In putting Man Of Promise up as a place lay in the King's Stand at 15:40, I am homing in on the fact he has never raced over five furlongs.
He last ran in England as a three-year-old winning a seven-furlong Yarmouth maiden and coming second in a sprint handicap on the July course.
Man Of Promise has spent the last 18 months running over six at Meydan, not an ideal preparation for a Gr1 over the minimum trip.
Saint Laurence is the only other runner not to have won over five. Three have won Gr1s over the trip: Nature Strip, Golden Pal and Winter Power so Man Of Promise will do well to make his presence felt.
Laying a Haggas three-year-old can be risky
I might have been tempted in the past to lay My Prospero for a win and place in the St James's Palace at 16:20 but my record with William Haggas three-year-olds in Group races isn't great.
He has only won a maiden and a Listed, so really oughtn't make a race of it with the 2,000 Guineas winner, Coroebus, or indeed New Energy and Wexford Native, the second and fourth in the Irish 2,000.
Another thing I considered is that My Prospero is half the odds of his stablemate, Maljoom who won the German 2,000. That is a clear indication that Haggas and Tom Marquand think a hell of a lot of My Prospero, so I will pass on laying him.
I would expect the Ascot Stakes to go to either Bring On The Night or Pied Piper. You would be quids in if you backed the Willie Mullins-Ryan Moore runner in the race; Thomas Hobson (4/1), Clondaw Warrior (5/1) and Simenon (8/1) have all won in the last decade.
Last year's winner Reshoun goes in to bat for Ian Williams again, so I would be wary of laying him for a place, too.
Majestic Dawn may not get the run of the race
My third lay on the first day is in the the Wolferton Stakes at 17:35.
Majestic Dawn ran out an easy winner at Goodwood last time when Jim Crowley opted to go 10 lengths clear from the off. He was still the best part of four lengths ahead of the runner-up West End Charmer and Movin Time at the line.
Those two underperformed on the day and so should not be written off.
Majestic Dawn had finished last of four under Rob Hornby on his previous start at Chester - behind Solid Stone, Certain Lad and Magellan, and I would sooner lay him for a place than Certain Lad.
I can see why Cleveland, Stowell and recent course winner Juan De Montalban head the market for the closing handicap at 18:10.
I don't recommend laying any of that trio, win or place. Best of luck if you place lay anything else.