Published: Tue, June 20, 2017
Entertaiment | By Lawrence Myers

Ward leads record American challenge at Royal Ascot

Ward leads record American challenge at Royal Ascot

"He was a bit reluctant to start and didn't really get into it", admitted Donohoe, who claimed a first Royal victor in another track-record time.

"They are both very fast and they are as fit as I can possibly get them", said Ward.

The State Opening was due to take place on June 19, but was delayed for two days after the inconclusive outcome of the General Election. He also won over this course, albeit a much softer course, in the Jersey Stakes (GIII) a year ago and was then second in the Queen Elizabeth II Stakes (GII) here in October.

American trainer Wesley A. Ward has entered 10 horses at Royal Ascot as part of the largest contingent of US runners to compete at the prestigious racing festival staged just outside London.

But that is not to say that he doesn't warrant being in the vicinity of evens; it's just that I don't bet like that. For me, that's soul destroying as it's the most important week of the year.

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"He is our best horse, and he has done very well after coming back home from Ireland".

In the day's final race, the $101,920 Sandringham Handicap for 3-year-old fillies at a mile, Ward starts Con Te Partiro, who was fourth in the Soaring Softly Stakes at Belmont Park on May 20 in her only start this year.

"I wasn't riding badly and I didn't feel a different jockey, it's just the opportunities were elsewhere and other guys had come in".

"And I love seeing the fashion, what people are wearing - it's a fabulous fashion show".

"I shudder to think what it would be like not to be here now, it's the centre of the racing world for this week".

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"I've got to have physio and get it properly looked after, so [I] won't be at Ascot this week". Ward has won seven races at Royal Ascot, including three runnings of the Queen Mary.

Dettori suffered a fall in the paddock at Yarmouth last week but returned to action in Sunday's French Oaks at Chantilly.

However, now focus shifts to his Ascot rides, as he seeks to add to his 56 winners at the meeting.

Winning jockey Stevie Donohoe said: "Being drawn nine I thought was a nice draw, but it ended up being a bad draw because I had nothing to aim at".

"There are lot of good horses in the race and we have total respect for them all". This used to be a big race but with the creation of the Commonwealth Cup, this race has taken a back seat and lost some of its quality.

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Unbeaten in five starts and the brilliant victor of last year's Coventry Stakes, Caravaggio would usually be regarded as banker material for the 1200-metre Group 1 but he faces the Gimcrack victor Blue Point, regarded by trainer Charlie Appleby as his best chance of the week, Clive Cox's Harry Angel, who has been clocking some serious times, and Ward's Bound For Home.

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