Queen Anne Stakes (Class 1) (Group 1) (1m)
The Queen Anne of course kicks off Royal Ascot of 2018 and it’s a Group 1 contest that’s ridden over the distance of one mile. It’s a competitive renewal this year and it’s see’s Rhododendron head affairs for the all conquering partnership of Aiden O’Brien and Ryan Moore following her success in the Lockinge at Newbury. She’s likely to be a tough nut to crack again here and is a worthy solid favourite trading at a general 11/4.
Benbatl is next up in the market for Saeed bin Suroor and Godolphin and he comes here off the back of a very profitable campaign over at Meydan in Dubai winning several big contests. He was also a Royal Ascot winner last year when landing the Hampton Court stakes and can be found trading at around 5/1 to make it another win at the Royal Meeting this time around.
French raider Recoletos comes here bang in form following two victories from two starts this term including a Group 1 the last day in the form of the Prix d’Ispahan. If turning up in the same form of that victory he’s likely to give a very bold showing. Olivier Peslier takes the ride on him and he can be found trading at a general 6/1.
The one i’ll be siding with here is BENBATL for Godolphin and Saeed bin Suroor. He’s been in great form over in Meydan winning some top class contests. The French master Christophe Soumillon takes the ride and despite Rhododendron being a solid favourite I like the chances of Benbatl at the prices.
BENBATL – (5/1) (E/W)