Racing UK

Royal Ascot countdown: Charlie Appleby selects his five to follow

Sunday 18 June 2017


By staff

With many of the feature races at Royal Ascot dominated by a select group of trainers, leaving the meeting with one winner is a statistic not to be frowned upon.

For the past two years Charlie Appleby has achieved just that, with the victory of Space Age in the 2015 King George V Stakes backed up by Hawkbill's win in last year's Hampton Court.

Blessed this year with a with a team of smart two-year-olds and talented older horses, Appleby has revealed five Royal Ascot horses to follow next week.

1. AQABAH (Coventry Stakes)

"He won his maiden at Ascot then went to the Curragh and finished fourth on soft ground there. On his American pedigree that didn't suit him, but he gained good experience there. He will be suited to a quicker surface and his work has been good since that race. He will now head towards the Coventry."

2. FRONTIERSMAN (Hardwicke Stakes)

"He put up a great performance in the Coronation Cup. He has come out of that race very well. All the signs have been good since Epsom with him and the plan is to head to the Hardwicke. His run at Epsom didn't surprise me as his home-work had been so good. It was a big jump, stepping up from handicap company to Group One company, but his home-work had been good and we went there confident of a good run. That's why we supplemented him for that race."

3. GRECIAN LIGHT (Sandringham Handicap)

"She danced every dance last year at the top table and she was always very competitive. I was pleased with her first start of the season in France.She finished third on soft ground which would probably not have been ideal. I purposely put her away for the Sandringham. Her work has been nice and I feel that she is off a competitive mark."

4. SECRET ADVISOR (King George V Stakes)

"The King George V Handicap is a race I like and we tend to have three or four runners in there. The one for this year could be Secret Advisor. He is stepping up in trip and I think that will suit him. I don't think he has met his optimum trip yet. He was a winner over a mile in his maiden. He then stepped up to a mile and a quarter at Windsor, where he met a nice horse on the day. We then dropped him back at Goodwood and again he ran a creditable race, but crying out that stepping up was only going to suit him.I feel he is a horse that going up to a mile and a half, he will find more improvement."

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5. SOUND AND SILENCE (Norfolk Stakes or Windsor Castle Stakes)

"He is a horse that broke his maiden on his debut at Newmarket then he finished fourth in the National Stakes at Sandown. He has come out of the race well. He did scope a bit dirty after the race, but that has cleared up well and his work has been good. I feel that he will potentially head towards the Norfolk Stakes at this stage."

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