St James's Palace Set To Kick Off Royal Ascot With A Bang; Ballydoyle Plans Taking Shape

Rosallion | Scoop Dyga

The G1 St James's Palace S. is shaping up to be one of the hottest races at Royal Ascot this year and both Rosallion (Ire) (Blue Point {Ire}) and Henry Longfellow (Ire) (Dubawi {Ire}) received positive reports from their respective trainers on Tuesday as they prepare to try and topple Notable Speech (GB) (Dubawi {Ire}) in the day one highlight.

Trained by Charlie Appleby, Notable Speech heads the ante-post betting for the St James's Palace following his striking success in the G1 2,000 Guineas, but Richard Hannon has not given up hope of reversing the form with his Newmarket runner-up Rosallion, who confirmed himself a high-class colt when going one place better in the G1 Irish 2,000 Guineas at the Curragh last time.

“I think Ascot will suit us an awful lot more than Newmarket,” Hannon told Unibet. “We were having our first run of the season, he obviously improved for that first run big time in the Irish Guineas, and he will have come on again. Coming round a bend, quickening off a bend, hopefully you will see him be potent. I can't think there's many horses around that will match him for a turn of foot.

“Sat swinging off that Ascot bend, waiting to press the button is how I've thought of it and hopefully that's what happens but there's no doubt Charlie's horse is a really good horse. I'd love to think we can beat him but he looked pretty good in the Guineas–they are two top-class horses.”

Henry Longfellow adds plenty of intrigue to the race as he tries to rediscover the form which saw him go unbeaten in three starts as a two-year-old, culminating with a five-length victory in the G1 National S. at the Curragh. He could manage only eighth on his return to action in the G1 French 2,000 Guineas at Longchamp, but trainer Aidan O'Brien is happy to put a line through that luckless run.

“Everything is well with him [Henry Longfellow] since the last day,” O'Brien told Sky Sports Racing. “In France we made the wrong decision tactically that we'd drop him and there was no pace on and it just became very messy up the straight. Every time Ryan [Moore, jockey] tried to get out he couldn't get out and his chance was gone.

“We felt it was a bit of a non-event, Ryan did as well, and everything has been well with him. We're looking forward to seeing him in Ascot.”

Elsewhere at Royal Ascot, O'Brien confirmed that Kyprios (Ire) (Galileo {Ire}) is firmly on course to try and regain the G1 Gold Cup crown he won in 2022, while two of the stable's Classic winners from last year, G1 Derby hero Auguste Rodin (Ire) (Deep Impact {Jpn}) and G1 St Leger scorer Continuous (Jpn) (Heart's Cry {Jpn}), are set to run in the G1 Prince Of Wales's S. and G2 Hardwicke S. respectively.

The trainer also outlined plans for his team of juveniles at the meeting, with Camille Pissarro (Ire) (Wootton Bassett {GB}) set to be tasked with trying to provide the Ballydoyle team with a record-extending eleventh win in the G2 Coventry S. on day one.

“We run Camille Pissaro in the Coventry,” said O'Brien. “He won first time and got beat second time. Ryan thought he was green so we think he's going to come forward from that. In the Queen Mary we run a filly called Heavens Gate. She won nicely at the Curragh over six furlongs last time and just got beat over five the first day. We're going back to five with her–it could be a little bit sharp but we'll see.

“In the Norfolk we have a horse called Whistlejacket and in the Windsor Castle we have a horse called Treasure Isle. In the Albany we have a filly called Fairy Godmother–she won at Naas last time and we really like her. Then in the Chesham we have a filly called Bedtime Story who won in Leopardstown.

“The racing is very competitive in Ascot, but hopefully they'll run well. Obviously we like them all. We think they're very smart horses and they wouldn't be there if we didn't.”

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