Our big Gold Cup hope Trueshan needs a deluge
Depending which weather forecast you believe, Ascot could get between 10mm-50mm of rain between tonight’s forecast thunderstorm and close of play on Friday, and just how much falls on the Royal Heath will determine whether Trueshan takes his chance in Thursday’s Gold Cup.
Very often the heavens have opened in Bracknell, just a mile away, yet not a drop of the wet stuff reached Ascot.
However, Alan, while acknowledging that he would not be flavour of the month with those planning to wear their poshest frocks for Ladies Day, has fingers and toes firmly crossed that the thunderstorm arrives early and brings plenty of rain so as to give the Gold Cup course a right old drenching.
“Because of the 48-hour decs, we’ve given Trueshan the provisional green light, but we desperately want rain, and I would not risk him on anything faster than good ground.
“Trueshan’s preparation has gone well, and I was delighted we were able to get a race into him at Chester, where he ran a blinder trying to give weight to Japan in the Ormonde.
“That race has blown away the cobwebs, and, while you can never be certain about two and a half miles, he wasn’t stopping at the end of the Long Distrance Cup at Ascot on Champions Day.”
Alan took On To Victory out of Royal Ascot on the first day, but Coeur de Lion, winner of last year’s Ascot Stakes, took his chance again in the marathon handicap, and, though easier ground would definitely had helped him, too, he did us proud, staying on up the straight to finish sixth.
We have declared three for Friday’s Duke of Edinburgh Handicap, Scarlet Dragon, Raymond Tusk and Tritonic, while Asymmetric missed Tuesday’s Coventry Stakes to wait for the novice at Newmarket on Friday evening.
Alan said:”Scarlet Dragon ran very well in the Swinton at Haydock, but the ground was bottomless and he did not quite get home. He has been in a good place at home recently, and the faster they go the better. He likes to come through horses, as you saw when he came from last to first from the home turn to win this race 12 months ago, and even though he is now 4lb higher Hollie (Doyle) knows him so well.
“Raymond Tusk looks magnificent and he has been running well all season, his second at York’s Dante meeting being really pleasing. He is another who would not want the rain to give Ascot a miss.”
Jim Crowley rides Raymond Tusk, while Ryan Moore has been booked for Tritonic, who would probably prefer that the ground did not become too testing as he is stepping up in trip, having had a pipe-opener on the polytrack at Chelmsford.
Assymetric, who clearly knew his job when winning at Goodwood first time out, has been in great form at home since. Martin Harley came to ride him last Saturday, and renews the partnership at Headquarters.