Aidan O’Brien’s So You Think (right) – aka the “Wonder From Down Under” – is the clear favourite for the 2012 Prince Of Wales’s Stakes at Royal Ascot, at a best price of 2.50 (ToteSport). But we prefer a better priced alternative (5.00 at BoyleSports) – and we’ll have a right royal celebration if it wins!
The 2012 Prince Of Wales’s Stakes will take place at 15:45 on the second day of Royal Ascot, Wednesday June 20th. So You Think finished second in the race last year and is back for another tilt at the race, but can Aidan O’Brien’s highly rate horse do the business? Let’s have a look at the race trends and see if we can get it beaten.
- All of the last 12 Prince Of Wales’s Stakes winners had run in a Group One over 9f to 12f last time out
- 11 of those 12 finished in the first three of that Group One race last time out
- 11 of the last 12 winners had taken part in at least 1 and no more than 3 races that year
These trends are very strong and immediately give us a great idea of the type of profile a potential Prince Of Wales’s Stakes winner should have. We should be looking at those horses that were recently on the premises in a Group One contest, that are race sharp but not having suffered too much exertion in the year so far.
- All of the last 12 winners of the Prince Of Wales’s Stakes had previously won over 10f or further
- 11 of the last 12 winners came to Royal Ascot having already won a Group One race
These trends suggest that our Prince Of Wales’s Stakes selection should be a classy sort, as the majority of the past 12 winners had already won at least one Group One race (the exception to this trend finished second in a Group One, having won at Group Two). It should also have winning form in the book over the 1m 2f (10f) trip.
- Only one 6 year old horse has won the Prince Of Wales’s Stakes in the past 30+ years
The last six year old to win the Prince Of Wales’s Stakes was Muhtarram in 1995, and that particular horse had also won the race as a five year old in 1994. I haven’t looked any further back than 1979, but no other six year old winners have been seen for an absolute age, certainly not in my lifetime.
Admittedly, the majority of Prince Of Wales’s Stakes participants tend to be aged four or five – in the last ten years for example, 84 of the 92 participants were aged four or five – so we shouldn’t place a tremendous amount of important on this particular trend, but bear with me, as it will become relevant.
If we apply the key trends to the 2012 Prince Of Wales’s Stakes field, we can quickly reduce it to just three potential selections: Carlton House, Planteur and the favourite, So You Think.
I am happy to rule out Planteur as I think the five year old has a lot to find. Fourth in the race last year and having never won outside of France, I much prefer the chances of the other two.
So You Think is six years old and as we mentioned, six year olds don’t have the best record in the race. With that in mind, plus the prohibitive best price of 2.50 (ToteSport) I am more inclined to teak the Queen’s four year old Carlton House at a best price of 5.00 (BoyleSports). The last five winners of this race have all been aged four and after his recent win in the Brigadier Gerard stakes, plenty of positive vibes came out of the camp, including this from Ryan Moore:
That was only his sixth race so you’d like to think he’ll keep on improving.
The Prince Of Wales’s Stakes
Wednesday 20th June 2012, 15:45
Carlton House @ 5.00 (BoyleSports)