Racing UK

Royal Ascot countdown: Jim Crowley nominates five of his best chances

Sunday 18 June 2017

Khairaat and Jim Crowley

By Racinguk.com staff

There are few occasions in racing as special as celebrating a winner at Royal Ascot.

Having tasted victory on three occasions at the meeting, champion jockey Jim Crowley knows exactly what it means to be walked back into the famous winner's enclosure.

With a number of useful outside rides lined up, not to mention a clutch of leading fancies for his boss Sheikh Hamdan Al Maktoum, the 38-year-old is hoping he can add to his tally of previous winners at this year's meeting.

"I've got a few chances in there," Crowley told Press Association Sport.

"When you go to Ascot, you can go there expecting the world and come out leaving with nothing. As I've learnt, it is a tough place to ride winners.

"I've been lucky I've had some good days at Royal Ascot and hopefully I can bang a few in this year.

"If you walk away with one winner you are happy. It is the main meeting for us through the year and the one everybody wants to ride winners at.

"No matter how good or bad a season you have had, when you get a Royal Ascot winner, people sit up and notice."

Here, Crowley reveals five horses he thinks will thrive at the five-day fiesta of Flat racing:

1 KHAIRAAT (Sir Michael Stoute/Wolferton Stakes)

"He was impressive at Chester and he seems to be a really nice horse. He would probably be my standout ride for the week.He did win well at Chester, but he only had 8st 7lb on his back and got it easy up front. Nonetheless, I still quite like the horse.He is the sort of horse that Sir Michael Stoute does well with and hopefully he will keep on progressing."

2 MUTHMIR (William Haggas/King's Stand Stakes)

"He would have a good chance in the King's Stand. He bounced back to his old self last time in France. The King's Stand is a good race but he seems to like being held up and come through horses. I was impressed with him in France and it is nice he has got that bit of form back.He was third in the race two years ago so he has got good form. Those sprinters go through phases where they really hit form and hopefully he will go there in really good order."

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3 SANTRY (Declan Carroll/Norfolk Stakes)

"He won at York under a penalty after winning a division of the Brocklesby. He is a smashing horse. He won on soft that day under a penalty, but he would act on good or good to firm ground. He has got loads of speed so he will give me a really good spin in the Norfolk and I will be looking forward to riding him."

4 TAAMOL (Sir Michael Stoute/Jersey Stakes)

"He won last time at Newmarket but he made hard work of it a little bit. He can hang a little bit but normally when they do that they have a little bit left in the tank.I think a big field like he will get in the Jersey will suit him where he can be in amongst the field.He is another horse that Sir Michael really likes. He has got plenty of ability and seven furlongs seems to be the right trip. He would go there with a good squeak in the Jersey."

5 TASLEET (William Haggas/Diamond Jubilee Stakes)

"He was really good last time. We weren't sure about the ground with him at York. He clearly loved a bit of juice in the ground but he is equally effective on good ground.He is one of those that has gone under the radar a little bit as he has always been campaigned at seven furlongs.Obviously dropping back to six has been the making of the horse and just holding him up a bit as well. Ascot should suit him.It's a great place to hold the horse up and come through them. He would have a good chance. William likes the horse and it was nice to see him win so well."

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