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Ad Nature Strip winning the 2022 Group 1 King’s Stand Stakes during Royal Ascot 2022. (Alex Livesey/Getty Images)

Flying the Aussie flag at Royal Ascot

23 June 2023 Written by VRC

The Aussies were below par in Tuesday's Group 1 King’s Stand Stakes (1000m) but three more hopefuls tackle the Group 1 Queen Elizabeth II Jubilee (1200m) on the final day of the Royal Ascot week.

There's a true international feel about Saturday's Group 1 Queen Elizabeth II Jubilee Stakes (1200m) with horse coming from far and wide to contest the £1 million sprint.

Australia (Artorius, Cannonball and The Astrologist), Hong Kong (Wellington), USA (Big Invasion) and France (Coeur De Pierre) all have runners engaged to take on the locals. Six horses in this field are returning after competing in the race last year.

Super mare Highfield Princess ran a credible second to Bradsell in Tuesday's Group 1 King's Stand Stakes (1000m) and will be primed for the six furlongs. She ran sixth behind Naval Crown in last year's edition of this race.

Artorius produced a barnstorming finish in this race last year, dead-heating for third, and connections will be hoping he can get over the top of this field in what is to be his last racing campaign before stud duties.


DAY 5 - SATURDAY 24 JUNE

Race 3 - QUEEN ELIZABETH II JUBILEE STAKES (1200m)

£1,000,000

3:40pm (12:40am AEST)

# Horse Weight Weight Trainer Jockey Barrier
1 Al Suhail (GB) 9st 5lb 59.5kg Charlie Appleby William Buick 12
2 Artorius (AUS) 9st 5lb 59.5kg Anthony & Sam Freedman James McDonald 8
3 Art Power (IRE) 9st 5lb 59.5kg Tim Easterby Oisin Murphy 11
4 Big Invasion (USA) 9st 5lb 59.5kg Christophe Clement Jim Crowley 7
5 Cannonball (AUS) 9st 5lb 59.5kg Peter & Paul Snowden Daniel Tudhope 4
6 Coeur De Pierre (FR) 9st 5lb 59.5kg Mauricio Delcher Sanchez Tony Piccone 5
7 Emaraaty Ana (GB) 9st 5lb 59.5kg Kevin Ryan Neil Callan 14
8 Khaadem (IRE) 9st 5lb 59.5kg Charlie Hills Jamie Spencer 2
9 Kinross (GB) 9st 5lb 59.5kg Ralph Beckett Frankie Dettori 1
10 Rohaan (IRE) 9st 5lb 59.5kg David Evans Aaron Kirby 10
11 Run To Freedom (GB) 9st 5lb 59.5kg Henry Candy Dane O’Neill 13
12 The Astrologist (AUS) 9st 5lb 59.5kg Leon & Troy Corstens Damian Lane 6
13 Wellington (AUS) 9st 5lb 59.5kg Richard Gibson Ryan Moore 15
14 Highfield Princess (FR) 9st 2lb 58kg John Quinn Jason Hart 16
15 Sacred (GB) 9st 2lb 58kg William Haggas Tom Marquand 3
16 Sandrine (GB) 9st 2lb 58kg Andrew Balding David Probert 9

#2 - ARTORIUS

4YO Brown Horse

Flying Artie – Gracie’s Lass (Redoute’s Choice)

Trainers: Anthony & Sam Freedman (Mornington/Flemington)

Jockey: James McDonald (59.5kg)  Barrier: 8

Owners: Newgate Bloodstock, Newgate SF, Horse Ventures, China Horse Club Racing, Go Bloodstock, Peake Racing, Artorius 2, CBC Racing, Artorius 1, FOS Enterprises, M Davidson, Greenwich Stud, M Pearson, Hold Your Horses, Aston Bloodstock, Carpe Diem, GW Holdings, J Unwala, Lustre Lodge, Artorius & M Wanzare

Breeder: Mr G J Perry, NSW

The four-year-old entire dead-heated for third in the Group 1 Platinum Jubilee last year, an eye-catching performance coming from well back in the field, to be only beaten 3/4 of a length by Godolphin runner, Naval Crown.

Connections pushed on to the Newmarket meeting for the Group 1 July Cup (1200m) where he again finished strongly to finish third behind multiple Group 1 winner, Alcohol Free.

He crossed the English Channel to France to contest the Group 1 Prix Maurice de Gheest (1300m) at Deauville and was again met with little luck in running.

Champion Hong Kong-based jockey Zac Purton returned home to ride Artorius in the Group 1 Canterbury Stakes (1300m). The entire again showed his customary late finishing burst to overcome champion New Zealand mare, Imperatriz, finally returning to the winner’s circle after his two-year-old triumph in the 2021 Group 1 Blue Diamond Stakes (1200m).

He stepped up to the 1500m of the Group 1 George Ryder Stakes, running Godolphin star, Anamoe, to three-quarters of a length in what was a mighty effort.

He will again be surging late up the Ascot straight and be one of the main chances in the race. It was announced that after his European stint, he will then retire to stud.

Artorius prior to the running of the 2021 Group 1 Coolmore Stud Stakes (1200m) at Flemington. (Reg Ryan/Racing Photos)


   

#5 - CANNONBALL 

3YO Chestnut Colt

Capitalist – Golconda (Snitzel)

Trainers: Peter & Paul Snowden (Randwick/Flemington)

Jockey: Daniel Tudthorpe (59.5kg)  Barrier: 4

Owners: James Harron Bloodstock Colts (Mgr: J Harron), Mrs B C Bateman, Love Racing (Mgr: B J Love), P Mehrten, Doyles Breeding & Racing (Mgr: M F Doyle), D Saab, G1G Racing & Breeding (Mgr: Mrs T L Vogel) & Rockingham Thoroughbreds (Mgr: J A Ingham)

Breeder: China Horse Club Racing Pty Ltd, SF Bloodstock LLC, Blake Sandblom Pty Ltd, NSW

Despite an unlucky 1.5-length third-placing behind Giga Kick in the Group 2 Danehill Stakes (1100m) at Flemington last October, Cannonball has been more than promising for connections.

The horse was transferred to Randwick stable of Peter and Paul Snowden, where he began with a win in the Group 3 Maurice McCarten Stakes (1100m) before a close-up third-placing behind Mariamia and Uncommon James in the Group 1 Galaxy (1100m) at Rosehill.

"They’ve all got to go through it, but he’s definitely better on top of the ground." - Peter Snowden

After a disappointing run in Tuesday's Group 1 King's Stand Stakes (1000m), jockey Brett Prebble believes the horse will improve. 

"He'll learn from it, he's only a young sprinter but he's better than that, he just got it all wrong."

"He did it all upside down, he's an impressive sprinter that has come here and done it all fairly wrong." Prebble stated.

It was fair from his best effort but he drops two pounds in weight he has to carry and has that run under his belt.

Co-trainer Peter Snowden believes he'll be better for the experience and that conditions were against him on Tuesday.

“You can’t keep making excuses. They’ve all got to go through it, but he’s definitely better on top of the ground." Snowden said.

Cannonball on the way to the barriers for the Group 2 HQ Tavern Danehill Stakes (1100m) at Flemington. (George Sal/Racing Photos)


#12 - THE ASTROLOGIST

6YO Bay Gelding

Zoustar – Aquada (Flying Spur)

Trainers: Leon & Troy Corstens (Flemington)

Jockey: Damian Lane (59.5kg)  Barrier: 6

Owners: Bennett Racing (Mgr: N Bennett), Southstar 1 (Mgr: A Downard), Zoustar Five (Mgr: A Stanley), Ginza Racing (Mgr: D Sullivan), S Roth, L Thomas, D Higginbotham, D & Mrs A Newton, P Camilleri, D Bolch, L Pearson, Mrs S Smallwood, S Mchenry, M Ramsey, Mrs A Hare, M Bone, D Mullen & Mrs L Bliss

Breeder: Rangal Park Stud, VIC

The Astrologist’s connections describe the six-year-old as tough and consistent, but most importantly, fast. With his biggest wins so far in Group 3 company, the 2021 Aurie’s Star Handicap (1200m) at Flemington, and Gold Rush (1400m) at Ascot in Perth.

After a solid effort in the Group 1 Yulong Stud Newmarket Handicap (1200m) behind super filly In Secret, his first overseas mission took him to Dubai for the Dubai World Cup meeting.

Lining up in the Group 1 Al Quoz Sprint (1200m) he was gallant in a narrow defeat behind Shadwell galloper Danyah, flying the flag well and securing an invite to the Royal meeting in the process.

After an even effort in his debut English run in the Group 2 Duke Of York Stakes (1200m) at York, he stepped up to 1400 metres of the Group 3 John Of Gaunt Stakes at Haydock Park, finishing second and giving the green light to press on to Royal Ascot.

The Astrologist winning the Group 3 World Horse Racing Aurie's Star Handicap at Flemington. (Brett Holburt/Racing Photos)

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