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King George VI and Queen Elizabeth Stakes Preview – Saturday 29th July

Last updated: July 28, 2017 by Leon Marshal

The feature race at Ascot on Saturday is the £1.15million Group 1 King George VI and Queen Elizabeth Stakes.

Enable hot favourite for King George

The race is one of the most prestigious mile and a half races in the European calendar and features a clash of the generations. For many years the King George was the natural target for Epsom Derby winners. That pattern has altered in recent years with the emphasis on speed and alternative attractions such as the Irish Champion Stakes and the York International.

The race enjoyed a golden spell in the 1970’s with victories for five Derby winners including Nijinsky (1970), Mill Reef (1971) and The Minstrel (1977). Shergar won the King George in 1981 while Dancing Brave famously atoned for his unlucky Derby defeat in 1986. Dahlia (1973 and 1974) and Swain (1997 and 1998) are the only horses to win the race twice. Sir Michael Stoute and Saeed bin Suroor have both trained the winner on five occasions.

Ascot Preview

Idaho joins Highland Reel at Ascot

John Gosden won this race with Oaks winner Taghrooda in 2014 and bids to repeat the performance with Enable.

Enable is a daughter of Nathaniel who was also trained to win the King George by Gosden in 2011. She finished a promising third to stable companion Shutter Speed at Newbury in April and has not looked back since. She forged clear to beat Rhododendron at Epsom before following up with ease in the Irish Oaks. Frankie Dettori was able to ease her down in the closing stages and still had more than five lengths to spare.

Highland Reel will be trying to win the race for the second time after beating Wings Of Desire a year ago. Aidan O’Brien’s five-year-old is at his best on fast ground and connections will be keeping a close eye on the weather. He has already won the Coronation Cup and the Prince Of Wales’s Stakes this season, showing terrific courage in both races.

Ascot Racecourse

Stoute and Bin Suroor chase record win

Sir Michael Stoute will become the most successful trainer of all time in the King George if Ulysses wins this weekend. The colt produced a career-best effort to beat Barney Roy by a nose in the Group 1 Eclipse Stakes last time out. He had previously finished just over a length behind Highland Reel on good to firm ground at Royal Ascot. He won a Newbury maiden by eight lengths on good to soft ground last season so the prevailing conditions should suit him.

Sir Michael Stoute will become the winning-most trainer of all time in the King George if Ulysses wins this weekend. The colt produced a career-best effort to beat Barney Roy by a nose in the Group 1 Eclipse Stakes last time out. He had previously finished just over a length behind Highland Reel on good to firm ground at Royal Ascot. He won a Newbury maiden by eight lengths on good to soft ground last season so the prevailing conditions should suit him.

Ascot Betting Tips

Enable @5-4 Paddy Power

Ulysses (each-way) @10-1 Paddy Power

Each-way 1/5 odds, 1,2,3

The King George VI and Queen Elizabeth Diamond Stakes is due off at 3.35 at Ascot on Saturday 29th July. The race will be televised live on ITV.