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A Review Of Royal Ascot’s Final Day On Saturday: Bacchus Foils Massive Gamble On Dreamfield In Wokingham Handicap At Royal Ascot

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Dating back to 1874 Royal Ascot’s Wokingham Stakes, one of the most fiercely competitive handicaps of the Flat season, had never seen a renewal to match that of the one run on Saturday afternoon when the 28-runner six furlong speed test was turned into a one-horse-race as far as bookmakers were concerned. Sent off the 2-1 favourite based on the belief that the unbeaten John Gosden-trained Dreamfield was a Group horse in disguise, running off a lenient mark of 103, proved almost the case but for the simple matter of a rival by the name of Bacchus.


Attempting to make all in the hands of James Doyle the son of Oasis Dream looked to have things in control until jockey Jim Crowley aboard the Brian Meehan-trained Bacchus pounced in the closing stage to record a narrow neck victory to the dismay of punters up and down the country. Just how much the defeat of the Godolphin-owned four-year-old saved the industry is unclear but almost certainly runs into several millions.

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The final day of the royal meeting is one the powerful Godolphin operation will want to forget as their Harry Angel, 5-2 favourite for the only Group 1 on the card – the Diamond Jubilee Stakes – produced an x-rated performance in the six furlong contest. The last horse to be loaded into the stalls the mount of Adam Kirby became upset with the colt’s foot becoming trapped on a rail as the stalls opened, causing the son of Dark Angel to lose many lengths on his eleven rivals.

Beating only one horse home, some ten lengths behind 4-1 winner Merchant Navy, Harry Angel was found to be lame after the race and will almost certainly attempt to put the record straight in Newmarket’s July Cup next month for which Clive Cox’s talented but excitable sprinter can be backed at a top price 5-1 with Betfair Sportsbook and Betfred.

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