Minding can reign at Ascot
Minding carries Chris Wilson's nap on British Champions Day at Ascot. He has a tip for every race at every course!
Minding is taken to win the Queen Elizabeth II Stakes
ASCOT: 1.25 Order Of St George, 2.00 Shalaa, 2.35 Zhukova, 3.10 MINDING (NAP), 3.45 Almanzor, 4.25 Chil The Kite.
CATTERICK: 1.45 Man Of Verve, 2.20 Starlight Romance, 2.55 Biff Johnson, 3.30 Pipers Note, 4.05 Age Of Elegance, 4.40 Captain Dion, 5.15 Fine Resolve.
CORK: 1.40 Clongowes, 2.15 Tony The Gent, 2.50 Sruthan, 3.25 Beast, 4.00 Crafted Jewel, 4.35 Fast On, 5.10 Avalanche, 5.40 Lord Of Art.
FFOS LAS: 1.50 Truckers Glory, 2.25 Defi Du Seuil, 3.00 Minella Daddy, 3.35 Copper Kay, 4.10 Garde La Victoire, 4.45 Johns Luck, 5.20 Sierra Oscar.
MARKET RASEN: 1.05 Desert Retreat, 1.35 Hoke Colburn, 2.10 Pemba, 2.45 L'Aigle Royal, 3.20 Blue Heron, 3.55 Florida Calling, 4.30 Flying Solo, 5.05 Mister Whitaker.
STRATFORD: 2.05 May Hay, 2.40 Tajseer, 3.15 Mountain King, 3.50 Lostock Hall, 4.20 Little Windmill, 4.55 Clic Work, 5.30 Wildmoor Boy.
WOLVERHAMPTON: 5.45 Eternalist, 6.15 Shypen, 6.45 Rural Celebration, 7.15 Niblawi, 7.45 Munawer, 8.15 Maid Of Tuscany, 8.45 Sooqaan, 9.15 Outlaw Torn.
Minding can strike a thumping blow for the fairer sex by winning the Qipco Queen Elizabeth II Stakes at Ascot.
A stunning field has been assembled for one of the highlights of Champions Day, but Aidan O'Brien can once again have the final word.
Make no mistake, Ribchester and Galileo Gold are the worthiest of foes, but this looks a great opportunity for Minding, who gets weight from 11 of her 12 rivals.
The daughter of Galileo – who else? – will have absolutely no issues dropping back in trip as she brilliantly won the Guineas at Newmarket over a mile.
And though she then succumbed to Jet Setting, who renews rivalry, in the Irish equivalent, there were excuses that day as she banged her head leaving the stalls.
Two more Group Ones over a mile and a quarter, and the Epsom Oaks, followed that Curragh reverse before she went toe to toe with the lads in the best race of the season so far, the Irish Champion Stakes.
Minding was hardly disgraced in third place, beaten three and a half lengths behind Almanzor, but it was probably enough to convince her trainer to leave the Arc well alone and go back to a mile.
The Ballydoyle filly is a class act, with a beautiful action and the versatility to handle whatever the demands of the race throws at her, as she showed when wriggling to glory at Epsom.
And though fillies hardly have an exceptional record in the QEII by any stretch of the imagination, Minding is, quite simply, an exceptional horse.
Hopes will be high that stablemate Found can nail the Qipco Champion Stakes later on the card, but the Arc heroine may have to play second fiddle to Almanzor.
With Irish Champion Stakes runner-up Found seemingly a little better over a mile and a half, as evidenced by her sweet success at Chantilly, the French raider gets the nod to uphold the form.
Trainer Jean-Claude Rouget has intentionally kept the Classic-winning colt fresh for this assignment following his brilliant effort in Ireland, with his three-year-old weight allowance sure to come in very handy.
O'Brien can leave the premises with another Group-race trophy beneath the bonnet as Gold Cup winner and Arc third Order Of St George should take an awful lot of beating in the Qipco Long Distance Cup, while Shalaa looks the curveball contender in the Qipco British Champions Sprint.
John Gosden's two-time Group One scorer radiated with health on his belated return over this course and distance on October 1 and should be much sharper with that run in the bag.
If that is the case, gifted northern raiders Mecca's Angel and Quiet Reflection could have their work cut out.
Perhaps one of the best bets on the card, though, is in the Qipco British Champions Fillies & Mares Stakes, in which Zhukova could be a class apart.
Dermot Weld identified this race as a likely end-of-season goal way back in May when she trounced a good-looking field in a Group Three at Naas.
She then stayed on purposefully back over this mile-and-a-half trip to win well at Leopardstown in September.
This is much tougher, but the lightly-raced four-year-old rates a cracking prospect – especially if there is a little ease in the ground.
Chil The Kite's claims in the Balmoral Handicap are much murkier, but he has won before over this course and distance and has slipped to an encouraging mark.
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