Carlton House set for Royal date

The last big Jubilee event was the Queen’s Silver Jubilee in 1977. That year ER also celebrated her last Group 1 winner, when Dunfermline took the Oaks. If Carlton House is first past the post next Wednesday in the Prince of Wales’s Stakes you could be forgiven for wondering if there is any connection between the two.

Carlton House was one of 14 acceptors for the 150th running of the race at yesterday’s six-day stage, and is a shortening 9/2 chance in the market, behind So You Think (7/4) and Cirrus Des Aigles (5/2). After seeming not to stay the 12 furlongs of the Irish Derby last June, he did not race again until dropping back to 10 furlongs when winning the Brigadier Gerard Stakes at Sandown last month.

John Warren, the Queen’s racing manager sounded optimistic about the prospects for Carlton House yesterday, when he reported the colt to be in great shape. He said, “This will be the test over what might be his ideal trip of a mile and a quarter at the top level. We can’t make any predictions but all I know from Sir Michael Stoute is that he is extremely well (and so is the horse!). He is very happy with the horse and very happy to stick to this plan. This was the plan all throughout the winter.”

Warren was relieved that Carlton House has had a trouble free preparation for Ascot, unlike last season, when he suffered a minor injury just five days before his unsuccessful Epsom Derby bid. He was looking forward to Carlton House proving himself at the highest level. He added, “Any win is a win but this horse is held in such high esteem that if he was able to win next week he would have proved the faith in him was justified and come to fruition.”

Those who act on coincidence will note that Carlton House has won an anniversary race before. The maiden race he took at Newbury in October 2010 was the Wade Willis 50th Birthday Maiden Stakes.

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