The colour, style and panache of the five day Royal Ascot meeting has been taking place this week and the top class flat racing for which it is renowned continues today before it wraps up tomorrow with a fabulous card that features two of the best sprint races of the entire calendar.
The Group One Diamond Jubilee Stakes is a six furlong contest that has been won and lost by some of the most acclaimed sprinters in the history of the sport including last year’s winner, the Australian superstar Black Caviar (pictured right).
I was very surprised on the opening day of this year’s Royal Ascot meeting when the crack South African speedster Shea Shea was caught near the line in the Kings Stand Stakes.
And if he were to show up tomorrow I would be confident he could set the record straight with a win.
However, there is some doubt about his participation meaning the Diamond Jubilee is shaping up into an open contest with no real standout performer.
That may well change post race, as there are a few with the potential to improve beyond their contemporaries and set down a marker for the sprint division.
The Irish trainer Edward Lynam knows what a top class sprinter looks like.
And he will bid to complete a Royal Ascot Group One sprint double when he sends Slade Power to post for tomorrow’s Diamond Jubilee after Sole Power won the Kings Stand on the opening day.
Lynam has always spoken highly of his four year old and the testing nature of the Ascot track, added to the ideal trip and the forecast quick ground means tomorrow could be the day that Lynam’s enthusiasm becomes a reality.
To me this is a horse we are yet to see the best of and represents some great value.
However, even the best laid plans sometimes encounter problems and that was true last weekend when the Sussex trainer Gary Moore sent Shamahan up to Leicester.
This horse must have good, quick ground and it was infuriating to see heavy showers throughout the evening deny Shamahan of the ground he needs.
He has an entry today at Newmarket and is a horse that is undoubtedly well treated.