The Paddy Power Blog spoke exclusively to snooker legend and racing pundit John Parrott ahead of the opening day of Royal Ascot.
John gave us his thoughts on some of the big races and picks out some (potentially) stunning each-way tips.
3.05 Kings Stand Stakes
“First thing you have to look at is Bated Breath from Roger Charlton’s yard who broke the track record at Haydock last time. The ground has been drying out all the time, it’s a lovely sunny day here, and although he was looking for firmer ground he might get away with it.
“Wizz Kid was impressive at Chantilly last time and we know it acts on the track after coming second to Deacon Blues so that’s a big danger.
“I really like Ortensia. The Australians have a fantastic record in this race winning it four times since 2003. This horse goes on any ground and is improving hand over fist. It won a Group 1 in May and will run a massive race today.”
3.45 St James Palace Stakes
“This is wide open. Willium Buick has been shrewd picking The Nile for John Gosden and there’s potential for it.
“Power is the benchmark and the one they all have to beat but a horse at a big price is Most Improved who has an each way shot.
“He lost both of his front shoes in his last run but they obviously think he’s very good. Kieren Fallon was glowing in his praises saying he’s one of the best moving horses he’s sat on.
“They were disappointed last time but if he’s as good as the hype and as good as he is at home he’s a great each-way price.”
4.25 Coventary Stakes
“Richard Hughes has been sat on plenty of good horses from Richard Hannon’s yard this year but the one that is most impressive is Sir Prancealot.
“This horse was not hampered once but twice in the National Stakes at Sandown but has a serious amount of toe. It’s interesting that he’s stepped up to six furlongs but he’s a horse with plenty of potential.
“Aidan O’Brien always has a nice stock and Christoforo Columbo won first time out. As for Dawn Approach, the old adage goes he’s done nothing wrong and Jim Bolger says he could be one of the nicest two-year-olds he’s ever trained.
“But the way Sir Prancealot won at Sandown was impressive and he’s guarenteed to be in there. It will take something special to lower his colours today.”
5.00 Ascot Stakes Handicap
“This is a really open race, Veiled won it last year but is contending with a seven pound penalty. Willie Mullins has to be respected with Simenon as well.
“John Quelly’s Elyaadi from Ireland has run well here before finishing second behind Junior off a four pound higher mark. He’s only been to Ascot twice and has been in the box on both times.
“He’s a working man’s price at each-way. It’s a wide open affair but Elyaadi will stay the trip and loves the track. In an open race that might be the one.”