Timeform: Four terrific tips for Thursday at Ascot

Ahead of the third day of the magnificent Royal Ascot festival we asked our racing boffins for their picks and as always, they delivered on cue…


Presumably named after a nice bottle of Veuve Clicquot rather than Geoff Capes, Vintage Brut has done everything right so far, taking the rise in class in his stride when winning the National Stakes at Sandown, and he could quickly reward his new owner with another success, this time in the Norfolk Stakes at 14:30.

American raider Shang Shang Shang comes with a big reputation and has to hold a great chance for a trainer who is creating something of a Royal Ascot dynasty, while Glory Fighter has scope for further improvement.

on Day Three of Royal Ascot at Ascot Racecourse on June 22, 2017 in Ascot, England.

 Get out of the stalls first with PaddyPower.com’s racing odds

Vintage Brut now races in the colours of Leicester City chairman Vichai Srivaddhanaprabha (good luck with that one, commentators) after the Thai businessman went crazy with his chequebook at the Goffs London Sale.

He also runs fellow new purchase Main Street in the Hampton Court Stakes at 15:05, who is respected, along with Key Victory, National Army and Nordic Lights, who represent a Godolphin outfit that has won the last two renewals, however the nod goes to Wadilsafa.

He looked potentially smart when winning a 1m minor event at Newmarket on his return and his pedigree suggests he will prove suited by this longer trip.


According to some independent research (honest, guv), Sun Maiden is a strain of medical cannabis, so would be a topical winner given the news of late.

The horse of the same name left her debut form well behind when bolting up in a minor event at Salisbury last month and is expected to make the necessary improvement now up in trip in the Ribblesdale Stakes (15:40).

Connections bypassed the Oaks in favour of this race and that can give her the edge over Wild Illusion, who is the clear pick on form but had a hard race when second at Epsom. Magic Wand, fourth that day, looks best of the others now back on faster ground.


Finally, Stradivarius is a stayer on the up judged by his emphatic win in the Yorkshire Cup and he can pull the strings in the Gold Cup at 16:20.

John Gosden’s charge can improve past the 2016-winner and last year’s second Order of St George to take his place at the stayers’ top table.

Vazirabad is the best in the division in his native France and a big danger to all on his first run in the race, though his chance would have been helped by some rain. He also needs to be delivered later than a VAR decision, due to idling when hitting the front, so isn’t one for the faint-hearted.

Get out of the stalls first with PaddyPower.com’s racing odds

What do you think?