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Ascot Racecourse is home to one of England’s most anticipated occasions of the summer sporting calendar; it is the defining stage upon which elegance and charm flourishes amongst a cast of thousands. Three hundred years in the making, Royal Ascot is certainly an occasion to be cherished – the pageantry and the majesty; the passionate roar of the expectant crowd; the colour, the phenomenal feast and the astonishing glory makes this remarkable event like nothing else in the world.
Britain’s most prestigious race meeting sees a sumptuous array of the world’s top-class horses compete for a staggering £6.5 million in prize money in front of Her Majesty the Queen Elizabeth along with other esteemed Royal Family members. The glorious five-day gathering, from 20th – 24th June will include eight Group One races, with the coveted feature races starting at 16:20 BST each day.
The prestigious meeting got off to a fabulous start with a Royal Flush heralded by the arrival at the beginning of this year’s sun-splashed event with the traditional Royal Procession bearing several senior members of the Royal Family. Accompanying H M Queen was the Duke and Duchess of Cornwall, the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge, the Earl and Countess of Wessex along with Princess Eugenie and Princess Beatrice.
Royal Ascot Day One (Tuesday 20th June): Racing Highlights
Racing Schedule & Results:
14:30 – (Group 1) Queen Anne Stakes – Winner: Ribchester
15:05 – (Group 2) Coventry Stakes – Winner: Rajasinghe
15:40 – (Group 1) King’s Stand Stakes – Winner: Lady Aurelia
16:20 – (Group 1) St James’s Palace Stakes – Winner: Barney Roy
17:00 – (Handicap) Ascot Stakes – Winner: Thomas Hobson
17:35 – Windsor Castle Stakes – Winner: Sound and Silence
Three Group One encounters on the opening day guaranteed that flat racing’s signature meeting was launched in terrific style. The Queen Anne and King’s Stand Stakes provided more than enough to whet the appetite of avid onlookers. In the Queen Anne Stakes it was the firm favourite Ribchester, ridden by William Buick, who gave owners, Godolphin, a superb opening win at the 2017 Royal meeting. The British-trained Thoroughbred produced a course record for the straight mile – a splendid way for Sheikh Mohammed to celebrate his 40 year anniversary as Godolphin chief. In the King’s Stand Stakes, flying filly Lady Aurelia emerged as the victor for the second successive year despite the absence of Frankie Dettori. The decorated Italian jockey picked up an injury on the eve of the royal meeting, but his capable deputy, John Velazquez, proved his mettle with a terrific victory in his stead.
The St James’s Palace Stake, however, certainly merited the acclaim of ‘race of the day’. The enthralling feature race saw a fiercely fought rivalry reignited when Dual 2000 Guineas winner Churchill, ridden by Ryan Moore, once again came head to head with Barney Roy, ridden by James Doyle. Back in May, Churchill had triumphed over Barney Roy by a length at Newmarket, but it was the latter who emerged victorious at Ascot Racecourse, triggering tumultuous applause from a captivated audience.
Royal Ascot Day Two (Wednesday 21st June): Racing Highlights
14:30 – (Group 3) Jersey Stakes
15:05 – (Group 2) Queen Mary Stakes
15:40 – (Group 2) Duke Of Cambridge Stakes
16:20 – (Group 1) Prince Of Wales’s Stakes
17:00 – Royal Hunt Cup Heritage Handicap
17:35 – Sandringham Stakes
Yesterday’s iconic opening day saw an interesting change from the original status quo as esteemed racegoers, for the first time in the event’s history, were allowed to adopt a more casual dress code – by removing their plush jackets and top hats – to combat the scorching heat wave. It looks to be more of the same today for visitors, who can expect another magnificent day in the sweltering sun with highs of 32 degrees.
Day Two will also represent an extremely busy day for H M Queen, who is set to travel directly to the racecourse from the State Opening of Parliament in time to enjoy another delightful day of riveting racing.
Today’s feature race, the Prince of Wale’s Stakes (16:20 BST), will certainly be one to savour. The highly anticipated Group One race will showcase some the world’s finest middle-distance horses and should provide an enthralling spectacle for the thousands in attendance.
Highland Reel, ridden by Ryan Moore, is the competition’s firm favourite; the five year old Irish Thoroughbred will be looking to add to his recent success in the Coronation Cup at Epsom in early June. He will, however, have a number of strong competitors to contend with, not least of all Ulysses, whose resilient performance at Sandown demonstrated his terrific capabilities. The contest will also spark a renewed rivalry between Highland Reel and Jack Hobbs with the latter beating the former in the Dubai Sheema Classic back in March.
The contest promises to be a tremendous sporting occasion, and is one that certainly shouldn’t be missed.
Eventmasters’ Royal Ascot Hospitality
Eventmasters are proud suppliers of splendid corporate entertainment packages at the sumptuous Royal Ascot. We aim to give your clients a memory to cherish with our exclusive VIP hospitality experiences.