ROYAL ASCOT DAY 1 (TUESDAY)

14:30 Ascot The winner of the Queen Anne Stakes tends to come from the first four in the market and is aged under five so four year old hot favourite Ribchester should give favourite backers a winning start to the day. He beat Lightning Spear by almost four lengths in the Lockinge last time out and with Lightning Spear and Mutakayyef, respective second and third favourites for this race, both on the wrong end of the stats being aged six, it would be somewhat of a surprise if Ribchester didn’t win here. For anyone looking away from the favourite in the hope of some value, American Patriot has an excellent record over a mile with three wins from four attempts and looks a decent each way option with Frankie Dettori on board. Ribchester (WIN)

15:05 Ascot Another race which has been kind to favourite backers in recent years, with seven of the last eleven winners coming from the head of the market. The early favourite is unbeaten Brother Bear who has impressed in both career runs and looks one to keep on side of over the course of the season. That said, trainer Jessica Harrington has struggled to find the winners enclosure in recent weeks i’m happy to look elsewhere. De Bruyne Horse has won two from two since stepping up to six furlongs, beating the highly regarded Mark Johnston trained Cardsharp by a couple of lengths at Epsom earlier in the month. Progressing well and improving with each run so far, its difficult to see him outside the first three here. A final mention must also go to Arawak who warrants respect running for Wesley Ward. De Bruyne Horse (E/W)

15:40 Ascot Wesley Ward has had this race as his target for Lady Aurelia for a good while and when he so openly talks about one of his horses with such passion it is usually worth taking note. She won the Queen Mary here last year by an astonishing seven lengths and will take some beating if arriving here in the same mood. Marsha looks the most likely to benefit from a below par performance from Lady Aurelia and as a winner of five from eight over the trip should give the favourite the most to think about, while last years winner Profitable and Signs Of Blessing are others to note for each way purposes. Lady Aurelia (WIN) – NAP

16:20 Ascot A race which has been dominated by Aidan O’Brien, who has had the winner four times in the last ten years and seven times overall. He runs three of the eight here today yet all the talk will surely be about the 2000 Guineas and Irish 2000 Guineas winner Churchill. He is unbeaten in seven and has already beaten a number of these opponents on at least one occasion so it’s no surprise to see him at a short price despite him only ever looking to do just enough in his races. Barney Roy looks to be the most obvious danger to the favourite and was only a length behind when second in the 2000 Guineas. He won’t be too far away again here but may have to settle for minor honours again. Churchill (WIN)

17:00 Ascot Willie Mullins and Ryan Moore have teamed up to win this race twice in recent years and they run Thomas Hobson who is the clear early favourite in an attempt to notch up another victory. He hasn’t raced on the flat since 2013 but with four wins from seven it wouldn’t be a huge surprise to see him win again here. That said, the favourite has a pretty poor record in the race so i’m opting for Nicky Henderson’s Beyond Conceit who won on only previous visit to Ascot, has made the frame in ten from thirteen on the flat and has Jamie Spencer booked to ride who has an 80% place strike rate when riding for the stable. Who Dares Wins and Oceane are others to note in a competitive looking handicap. Beyond Conceit (E/W)

17:35 Ascot Trainer Wesley Ward has won this race twice in the last ten years and he runs both Nootka Sound and Elizabeth Darcy in a bid to win the finale on day one. Both look to have decent chances on the back of their respective victories on debut, while Declarationofpeace wasn’t disgraced when third on debut and has since won handsomely at Dundalk. Corinthia Knight won two from two on the all-weather before placing over course and distance last month, his first attempt racing on turf. Although no match for the winner he was still over three lengths clear of third and could improve with that experience under his belt. Black Orange and Dragons Tail both ran well at Chester recently, Black Orange finishing second by a nose and Dragons Tail winning over the minimum trip by over four lengths. Given their recent runs and the fact they are both proven on turf I am happy to have an each way go on both. Black Orange (E/W) Dragons Tail (E/W)

by Dean Kilbryde