It's day one of Royal Ascot on Tuesday and the scintillating card includes a trio of Group 1 races that culminates in the St James's Palace Stakes.
The St James's Palace Stakes features the winners of English and Irish 2000 Guineas amongst a high-quality field of nine contenders bidding to capture the £340,000-plus top prize.
|What||St James's Palace Stakes|
|When||4.20, Tuesday 20th June|
|How to watch||bet365 Sports Live Streaming, ITV & Sky Sports Racing|
|Odds||Paddington 2/1, Chaldean 9/4, Cicero's Gift 5/1, Isaac Shelby 9/1, Mostabshir 9/1, Royal Scotsman 14/1|
This Siyouni colt wasn't one of the heavily touted Ballydoyle juveniles last year, despite crossing to Ascot for his debut in September (finished fifth).
He won a Curragh maiden next time and has progressed rapidly this season to win a Naas handicap off 97, a soft-ground Listed race upped to a mile at the Curragh in early May and then the Irish 2000 Guineas in strong fashion with the likes of Charyn (fourth), Galeron (fifth) and Royal Scotsman (ninth) in his wake.
Likely has more up his sleeve and a major contender for top connections now.
Chaldean @ 9/4
Trainer: Andrew Balding
Jockey: Frankie Dettori
This Frankel colt ended last season as Britain's champion juvenile when just fending off Royal Scotsman in the Dewhurst.
He dumped Frankie Dettori from his back on comeback in the Greenham at Newbury - paving the way for Isaac Shelby to win - but put that behind him to win the 2000 Guineas at HQ since with a few of these behind.
Should be no worries on this quicker ground and his Guineas win is probably the strongest form on offer.
Cicero's Gift @ 5/1
Trainer: Charlie Hills
Jockey: Kieran Shoemark
Unbeaten son of Muhaarar is now 3-3 after streaking clear in a Goodwood Conditions race over this mile trip in early May.
Well held second ran well enough in the Diomed since at Epsom since but this is still a steep rise in class. Clearly has plenty talent and very much entitled to continue his progress and be a contender despite class-jumping.
An impressive Kempton novice winner in November on debut would have learned plenty on the job when returning to action in the bet365 Craven at Newmarket in April, ultimately finishing fifth after weakening late on.
Gave weight and a beating to his rivals in a York novice since, with a pair of next-time-out winners amongst the vanquished, after showing a fine turn of foot and his top connections now opt for the sharp rise into Group 1 company after just three outings.
Isaac Shelby @ 9/1
Trainer: Brian Meehan
Jockey: William Buick
A smart 2YO last summer, winning the Group 2 bet365 Superlative Stakes on his second start at Newmarket in July.
Found things tough in the Dewhurst in one further run, but impressed with Greenham win at Newbury (7f, soft) in April - albeit after Chaldean's mishap at the start.
Led for much of the straight in the French 2000 Guineas at Longchamp five weeks ago only to get run down late and a contender on that form.
Royal Scotsman (14/1) gave Chaldean a real race in the Dewhurst at Newmarket last season and was then placed behind him in the 2000 Guineas at HQ in May.
He didn't settle early on in that race and things didn't pan out ideally when disappointing as favourite in the Irish version won by Paddington since. No great shock if he rebounds here.
He holds Charyn (40/1) on their Greenham meeting and Roger Varian's colt has since been held in the English and Irish Guineas, ensuring he's got his work cut out on the formbook coming here.
Galeron (40/1) was fourth in the Newmarket Classic at 150/1, but Charlie Hills' charge didn't build on that since at the Curragh - finishing fifth as Paddington dominated.
It's been a fine season so far for the Amo Racing team and Karl Burke's Indestructible (50/1) represents them here.
Kevin Stott guided him home in the bet365 Craven in April, his first start for this new trainer, but he was down the field in the Guineas since and both that run and last year's defeats at York and Doncaster leave him with a job on to get one over on Chaldean.