St. Jamess Palace: Mastercraftsman heads ratings
by Geir Stabell (email@example.com) / Globeform (http://www.globeform.com)
Last update: 2009-06-16 11:04:06 (First published: 2009-06-11 10:21:50 )
Royal Ascot Tuesday:
The top summer mile contest for three-year-olds, not just at Royal Ascot but in the world, gets a strong favourite in Mastercraftsman, an impressive winner of the Irish 2,000 Guineas (G1) last month.
He takes what is clearly the best form into the St. Jamess Palace Stakes (G1) on opening day, but this contest often triggers some shuffling of the names at the top end of the ranking in the mile division. Many a Guineas winner has been denied further glory when coming to Ascot over the years and one name in particular sticks out as a potential giant killer this time.
ST. JAMESS PALACE STAKES (G1)
Royal Ascot 16 June 2009 1 mile turf (round course)
Horses presented with best Globeform, sire, GF rating last starts, rider
123 MASTERCRAFTSMAN (Danehill Dancer) 112p 123p / J Murtagh
117 DELEGATOR (Dansili) 110p 117p - 0 / J Fortune
113 EVASIVE (Elusive Quality) 113p / 112P / R Moore
111 LORD SHANAKILL (Speightstown) 111 in 2008 / J Crowley
111 INTENSE FOCUS (Giants Causeway) 111 in 2008 / K Manning
110 SOUL CITY (Elusive City) 109p in 2008 / 110p / R Hughes
108 PURE POETRY (Tagula) 103p 101p 108 - 108 / R Hughes
109 ORIZABA (Orpen) 109p in 2008 / 104p / L Dettori
105 SET SAIL (Danehill Dancer) 103 105p 0 / J Heffernan #
100 BORN TO BE KING (Storm Cat) 100p 0 - 0 / C ODonoghue ^
123 MASTERCRAFTSMAN Clearly best, big race last out, on heavy ground
117 DELEGATOR Perhaps Jersey St. would have suited better, but this is G1
113 EVASIVE Needed the run in Guineas, lots of improvement expected!
111 LORD SHANAKILL Solid, not brilliant, at two, tough year ahead
111 INTENSE FOCUS X Solid, not brilliant, at two, tough year ahead
110 SOUL CITY Respectable third to Mastercraftsman in IRE, best on soft
109 ORIZABA OK reappearance when third G3 Chantilly June 7, up in class
108 PURE POETRY Hit form early, very game but up against it here
105 SET SAIL Hinted at ability on a couple of occasions, but outclassed
100 BORN TO BE KING Pacemaker for Mastercraftsman, as might Set Sail be
EVASIVE, who was badly in need of the run (after having been held up in his work) in the 2,000 Guineas (G1) is very interesting here. He showed superb tactical speed in the Guineas but tired in the closing stages and passed the post in sixth, 4 ½ lengths behind Sea The Stars. Evasive will be much fitter now and his prominent running style is just what you want in a mile race on the round course at Ascot.
At Newmarket, he came home just a neck behind MASTERCRAFTSMAN, who hacked up in the Irish 2,000 Guineas (G1) three weeks later. Mastercraftsman will be favourite for the St. Jamess but one must wonder how much his winning margin at The Curragh had to do with the testing ground. He is also quite exposed. Evasive, trained by Sir Michael Stoute, has far more scope for improvement.
DELEGATOR (second in the Guineas) will also be in opposition once more though it is hard to see him troubling Evasive. In fact, Evasive has a great chance of becoming champion miler this year. It is hard to predict, at this early stage, what his price will be on Tuesday, but Totesport have priced him up at 13/2 in the ante-post book and that looks way too big. This colt could well become the gamble in this race.
RECOMMENDED EARLY BET: EVASIVE 13-2 (Tote)
A: EVASIVE & MASTERCRAFTSMAN
Win: Evasive - see above
60% on Mastercraftsman to beat Evasive
40% on Evasive to beat Mastercraftsman
Main Aim (Queen Anne) 9-2
Evasive (St. Jamess Palace) 6-1
1 Each-way treble, 3 win doubles:
2.00 Main Aim 9-2
3.05 Amour Propre 10-3
3.45 Evasive 6-1
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