A Breeders’ Cup spot was on the line at Royal Ascot on Wednesday afternoon, as the Prince of Wales’s Stakes was the featured Group 1 on the second day of the meeting. There were also American hopes in the form of Twilight Gleaming for trainer Wesley Ward, who was the heavy favorite to win the G2 Queen Mary Stakes. We will run through the results from the second day of the royal meeting below.
Love Returns To Claim Breeders’ Cup Berth
It had been a long wait to see Love back on the racetrack for trainer Aidan O’Brien, but she didn’t disappoint in the Prince of Wales’s Stakes on Wednesday afternoon. There were doubts surrounding whether her long layoff would have been detrimental to her chances in the featured race, as she last lined up to win the Yorkshire Oaks back in August last year. Doubts were raised further after Battaash struggled on his return after a long layoff the previous day. However, Love showcased just how special of a horse she is to cruise home in the featured Group 1.
She led from the opening exchanges right until the end, and even when put under pressure by Audarya in the final moments, she had the character and determination to fight back. This four-year-old produced one of the all-time best performances in this race with Ryan Moore on board, and she will certainly get an awful lot of attention when she lines up in the Breeders’ Cup Turf later in the year. On this form, she would seem to be the leading contender. It was a fourth straight Group 1 success, as she had previously won the 1,000 Guineas, Epsom Oaks, and Yorkshire Oaks as a three-year-old. She is a superstar, and even a classy field couldn’t get near her level.
Dettori Records 75th Royal Ascot Success
Frankie Dettori is so often the man for the big occasion at Royal Ascot, and he once again showed how much his love for the meeting is shown in his racing in the G2 Duke of Cambridge Stakes. Dettori rode Indie Angel to victory in Group 2. She won by a clear two-and-a-half lengths despite being set off as a 22/1 outsider. However, no horse with Dettori onboard is ever an outsider, and he delivered a masterclass in a big-field race.
The jockey bided his time in midfield before navigating to the quickest side of the track to speed home from the rivals. Once Indie Angel had the space, the speed was the decisive factor as she went well clear of the field. The victory means that Dettori now has 75 winners at the royal meeting, which is 12 more than the next best, Ryan Moore. Heavily supported Lady Bowthorpe was in second, while 11/4F Queen Power was back in third.
American Disappointment In Queen Mary Stakes
American trainer Wesley Ward was hoping to start the day with the first Ascot winner of the week, as Twilight Gleaming started the G2 Queen Mary Stakes as the 9/4 favorite in the betting. However, despite a valiant effort, John Velazquez wasn’t able to get the two-year-old close enough to mount a serious challenge.
Quick Suzy was the winner of the race at 8/1 for trainer Gavin Cromwell, as she finished one and a quarter lengths clear. It was the first Royal Ascot winner for Cromwell, who has been more synonymous with training winners in National Hunt races throughout his career. There was a big-priced third in the race, as 50/1 chance Cheerupsleepyjean claimed a place finish in the Group 2 contest.