In the latest of our Royal Ascot 2013 previews, we’ve taken a look at the Royal Hunt Cup. Last year, Tom Tate’s Prince Of Johanne (pictured) saw off 29 rivals to land the prize and this year, the seven year old will be bidding to defend his crown. We’re keen to take him on though, and we’ve found a couple of 25/1 (26.00) shots with Coral that seem to fit the bill. Read on to discover our Royal Hunt Cup betting tips…
With 116 currently entered for the 2013 Royal Hunt Cup, we need to streamline the field somewhat before getting stuck into the form. To do that, we’ll take a look at past winners of the race, pick out some trends and see which horses among this year’s entrants have the same kind of profile, while discarding the rest. Here are what we consider to be the strongest Royal Hunt Cup trends:
Key Royal Hunt Cup Trends
- All of the last 14 Royal Hunt Cup winners were officially rated between 91 and 105
- All of the last 14 winners carried home between 8st 6lbs and 9st 5lbs
- 12 of the last 14 winners had won no more than 3 handicap races in their careers
- 11 of the last 14 winners of the Royal Hunt Cup had contested between 4 and 14 handicap races
What can we glean from these Royal Hunt Cup trends? It’s pretty clear that our selection should fall within a certain weight and official rating range and that we should be looking to avoid horses that are over exposed to the handicapper.
- 13 of the last 14 winners of the Royal Hunt Cup had run in the past 45 days
- 11 of the last 14 winners had finished 1st or 2nd already that season
As with so many of the big Royal Ascot races, we should be looking for a horse that is race fit and in good form.
- 12 of the last 14 Royal Hunt Cup winners had previously won over 1m or further
- 12 of the last 14 winners had previously won a Class 3 or better
- 11 of the last 14 winners had previously placed in a Class 2 or better
These trends tell us that we need a horse with proven form over the Royal Hunt Cup trip, as well as one with a certain amount of proven ability in the form book. A low grade handicapper isn’t going to turn up at Royal Ascot and improve beyond all recognition to win.
- 12 of the last 14 winners of the Royal Hunt Cup were aged 4 or 5
There hasn’t been a Royal Hunt Cup winner aged 3 in my lifetime, while there have been just three aged 6 or older (all three were aged 6) in the last quarter of a century. Admittedly, 4 and 5 year olds tend to make up a large chunk of the field, but they still outperform older and younger rivals in percentage terms.
Applying the above trends to the 2013 Royal Hunt Cup field allows us to remove all but two horses: David O’Meara’s gelding Two For Two and the Jeremy Noseda trained filly Burke’s Rock.
Burke’s Rock has done well so far this season, making her reappearance in a Listed race on the All Weather at Kempton where she finished 4th of 14, before winning a Listed race at Goodwood on good ground. That would seem to be the key to her, but you’d have to fancy that Royal Ascot in June is going to be nice and dry, so the going shouldn’t be an issue. If there is a chink in the armour, it’s her lack of experience in big fields, but even the most experienced of campaigners have to trust something to luck in such a big field so I’m not too concerned by that.
Two For Two is an interesting animal, having started out in France where he didn’t really tear up any trees but did mange to win a couple of small field, low key races. Since moving to the David O’Meara yard however, he’s progressed nicely through the ranks, kicking off with a head defeat in a Class 4, before winning a Class 3 and placing in a Class 2. His last time out effort saw him finishing fourth in a York Listed race. All of those results came on good ground or better, but almost all of his French runs were on soft ground or worse, so he seems a versatile enough sort.
Both horses are a best price of 25/1 (26.00) to win this year’s Royal Hunt Cup (with Coral) and I reckon that both are worth an Each-Way bet, in what is always a big field and a tricky race to find a winner.
The 2013 Royal Hunt Cup
Wednesday June 19th, 16:25
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