15:45 Royal Ascot: The Fugue a solid alternative to Al Kazeem
Al Kazeem will almost certainly be one of the best backed horses of the week to win the Prince of Wales Stakes, but punters favouring a bit of each-way value should seriously consider the prospects of The Fugue.
It is understandable as to why Al Kazeem is as short as 5/2, given the manner of his victory in the Tattersalls Gold Cup last time, when beating last season’s Epsom Derby king Camelot with seemingly a bit in hand.
Of the last six winners to try to follow up in the Prince of Wales Stakes after winning the Tattersalls Gold Cup, three have won and the other three have been placed, which makes it a notable trial.
There is no real reason to suggest why Camelot will be able to reverse this form, although jockey Joseph O’Brien is optimistic that there is some improvement left.
With Camelot not an each-way price at 11/4, it is hard to justify backing him.
Therefore, it is The Fugue that may lay down the biggest challenge to the favourite in her first career race against colts.
The Fugue did win the Nassau Stakes at Goodwood last year, but could have easily had other Group 1 successes on her resume too, if she avoided trouble in running in both the Epsom Oaks and the Breeders’ Cup Filly and Mare Turf.
Windsor Palace is in the field and will likely attempt to perform pace-making duties for Camelot, although there is still reason to believe that this race will still largely turn into a bit of a sprint over the final 2f.
This will suit The Fugue nicely given her winning form over this distance, while she has proven stamina to stay further if it is determined that a faster gallop will give Camelot a better chance of reversing form with Al Kazeem.
The Fugue’s 3lb fillies’ allowance also puts her about level with Al Kazeem from a ratings perspective, which also suggests that she is the value call at the prices at 5/1.
All Odds and Markets are correct as of the date of publishing.