June 17 Racing Tips: Stradivarius to come out on top in the Gold Cup

The third day of Ascot is always an exciting one, especially with the Gold Cup in the card at 4.15pm. The Planet Sport tipsters are here to provide some hot selections on Thursday June 17.

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14:30 The Norfolk Stakes - Go Bears Go

Go Bears Go showed plenty of speed to make all over five furlongs at Ascot last month, and he is a major contender for the Norfolk Stakes.

He certainly has a big chance in the first race of the day.

15:05 Hampton Court Stakes - Mohaafeth

Mohaafeth had his Derby hopes spoiled by rain at Epsom, but success awaits in the Hampton Court Stakes.

Unbeaten in three starts, Mohaafeth thoroughly impressed with a five-length Listed victory at Newmarket in May, with quick ground and 10 furlongs seemingly playing to his strengths.

Trainer William Haggas felt Mohaafeth had little chance of making his mark on easy ground at Epsom, so the decision to keep his powder dry for this event may prove wise.

15.40 Ribblesdale Stakes - Divinely

Adding Divinely to the Ribblesdale Stakes can earn rich rewards for Ballydoyle.

A full sister to Found, Divinely was a Group Three winner at two but has fallen short twice this year, first in the Oaks Trial at Lingfield and then in the Classic itself.

She stood no chance against Snowfall at Epsom, but Divinely ran on well after not enjoying an ideal passage and also having to contend with an unfavourable track position.

After being beaten by nearly two lengths by runner-up Mystery Angel, Divinely's name was not tarnished and looks the type to improve as time goes on.

16:15 Gold Cup - Stradivarius

Stradivarius can join Yeats as a four-time winner of the Gold Cup at Royal Ascot.

While there have been a handful of treble scorers, only Aidan O'Brien's Yeats has so far triumphed four times, dominating between 2006 and 2009.

Stradivarius has been a similar force in the staying division in recent seasons, first marking himself as top-class performer when winning the Queen's Vase at the Royal meeting in 2017, before adding Goodwood Cup gold later that summer.

The following year saw Stradivarius really perform at his best, going unbeaten through 2018 and almost making it another 100 per cent record in 2019.

Coronavirus resulted in untraditional preparation for his attempt at a Gold Cup hat-trick last year where he finishing third in a rejigged Coronation Cup at Newmarket.

Not even heavy rain could stop Stradivarius at Ascot, ploughing through the soft ground for a comfortable 10-length verdict, before then adding a fourth successive Goodwood Cup.

The wheels slightly came off after that, with a narrow defeat dropped back to 12 furlongs for an Arc prep, while deep ground at ParisLongchamp gave him little chance in the main event itself.

Stepping back up in distance - again on soft ground - for the Long-Distance Cup on Champions Day was another misstep, but thankfully those experiences did not seem have dulled Stradivarius' enthusiasm when he came out on top in a tactical Sagaro Stakes on his seasonal bow as a seven-year-old at the end of April.

John Gosden, has been positive in the build-up, so it is hard to go against the reigning champ.

Derby hero Serpentine is a fascinating contender for Aidan O'Brien, but it is tough to fancy looking at his recent form.

17:00 Britannia Stakes - Aerion Power

Aerion Power can go well at a decent price in the Britannia Stakes.

17:35 King George V Stakes - Nagano

Nagano is a nice, unexposed runner for Roger Varian in the King George V Stakes.

18:10 Buckingham Palace Stakes - Danyah

Danyah came close in two of the spring's most competitive handicaps, finishing fourth in the Lincoln and second in the Spring Cup.

However, Danyah can enjoy his moment in the spotlight in the Buckingham Palace Stakes, where dropping back to seven furlongs here could prove a smart move.

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