Showpiece of English racing, Royal Ascot begins todayTuesday, June 15, 2021
Royal Ascot is the highlight of the Flat racing calendar in Britain and a major social occasion. It is attended each year by the Queen and other members of the royal family.
Royal Ascot takes place between Tuesday, June 15 and Saturday, June 19.
As it stands, a reduced number of spectators are permitted to attend Royal Ascot with social distancing restrictions being enforced for all in attendance. There are number of additional races to cater for the increased demand of horses entered.
Tuesday, June 15
All eyes are on Ascot for day one of the much-anticipated royal meeting.
Three Group 1 prizes are on offer, starting with the return of Lockinge Stakes winner Palace Pier in the Queen Anne Stakes. The four-year-old's only defeat came at this course, but he is one of the best milers in the world, a former Royal Ascot winner, and will take some beating in his current form.
Battaash races for the first time in 2021 in the King's Stand Stakes. It will be his fourth run in the Group 1 contest, and he has yet to finish out of the top two.
The final Group 1 of the day, the St James's Palace Stakes, looks to be an intriguing rematch between two familiar rivals, 2,000 Guineas winner Poetic Flare and the Jessica Harrington-trained Lucky Vega.
Both were last seen finishing behind Mac Swiney in the Irish 2,000 Guineas.
The Coventry Stakes (3.05) will also provide Group 2 action on Tuesday and US trainer Wesley Ward will be looking for his twelfth Royal Ascot winner with Kaufymaker.
Wednesday, June 16
The Prince of Wales's Stakes (4.20) is the talk of Wednesday, with Champion Stakes winner Addeybb hoping to go one better than last year. He will have to contend with Love, last season's 1,000 Guineas and Oaks winner.
There is also Listed action in the Windsor Castle Stakes with another Wesley Ward runner, Ruthin, looking to build on her impressive maiden win at Keeneland.
Thursday, June 17
It's Gold Cup day and Stradivarius sets out for a record-equalling fourth Gold Cup under Frankie Dettori, returning to the track where he landed the Sagaro Stakes on his seasonal comeback in April.
Dubai Gold Cup winner Subjectivist will be looking to upset the narrative for the Mark Johnston yard.
Elsewhere, Noon Star will be stepping out in the Group 2 Ribblesdale Stakes after missing the Oaks due to a blood disorder. The Norfolk Stakes (2.30) and the Hampton Court Stakes round off Thursday's Group racing. The unbeaten Mohaafeth tackles the Hampton Court.
Friday, June 18
Classic winner Mother Earth tackles the Coronation Stakes (4.20). A surprise winner of the 1,000 Guineas for Aidan O'Brien, she will be taking on the progressive Ed Walker-trained Primo Bacio for the first time.
The Commonwealth Cup (3.40) sees the return of last year's Queen Mary Stakes winner Campanelle, who clashes with unbeaten French filly Suesa.
Gear Up will be looking to return to form in the Group 2 King Edward VII Stakes after a below-par run in the Derby.
The top juvenile fillies clash in the Albany Stakes, a race headed by Flotus, trained by Simon and Ed Crisford.
Saturday, June 19
The final day of Royal Ascot features the Diamond Jubilee Stakes, where Glass Slippers could make her first start since winning Breeders' Cup Turf Sprint win.
The first three home in the Coronation Cup could line up in the Hardwicke Stakes, with winner Pyledriver potentially meeting Japan and Al Aasy once more.
All three may have to contend with Broome, who has enjoyed a productive campaign so far.
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