Royal Ascot: Hollie Doyle on weather watch for Trueshan ahead of Gold Cup | Racing News

In her latest exclusive update, our ambassador Hollie Doyle discusses her rides on Day Three of Royal Ascot on Thursday, live on Sky Sports Racing.

Weather watch for Trueshan ahead of Gold Cup

It’s a familiar story for Trueshan as we watch the weather on the build-up to the Group One Gold Cup (4.25).

Racing fans know only too well that he needs at least good ground to perform to his best and I’m sure his devoted trainer Alan King won’t want to risk him on anything quicker.

I’ve been happy enough with his two runs this season following a second wind operation and feel he can build on his third in the Henry II Stakes at Sandown if conditions are in his favour.

Trueshan and Hollie Doyle edge out Coltrane to win the Long Distance Cup
Trueshan and Hollie Doyle edge out Coltrane to win the Long Distance Cup at Ascot

It’s a strong renewal with Aidan O’Brien’s Kyprios well fancied to add to his win in the Gold Cup two years ago but I’m surprised that last year’s runner-up Coltrane is as big a price as he is.

Andrew Balding’s seven-year-old and Trueshan have fought out some tough battles and he’s a horse I always respect. He won first time up on home turf in the Sagaro Stakes at Ascot in May and goes on the quicker ground.

Spencer colt worth his place in Norfolk

I always enjoy riding for Newmarket trainer Richard Spencer and owner Phil Cunningham and I’m on their colt The Man in the Group Two Norfolk Stakes (2.30).

The Royal meeting’s been on the cards for him since he made a winning debut at Southwell in April when he overcame his greenness for Kieran Shoemark. By Mehmas, he comes from a good family and can hopefully run much better than his big odds suggest he will.

Aidan O’Brien’s hot favourite Whistlejacket, a son of No Nay Never, sets a demanding standard after beating subsequent Group winner Arizona Blaze in Listed company last time.

Trip ideal for King George partner

East India Dock looked a colt with a bright future when bolting up at Salisbury by nearly 10 lengths last month and ran well in better company at Doncaster last time.

James Fanshawe’s gelding is a lot higher in the weights in an ultra-tough handicap but has the credentials to run well in the King George V Stakes (3.05).

The drop back to 1m 4f looks ideal and I’m happy with my draw in stall one. Hopefully he copes with faster ground than he’s previously encountered.

Hills colt an ideal Britannia type

My Britannia Stakes (5.05) mount Cogitate is a colt I know well after winning on him on debut at Newbury last July and I’m looking forward to him at Ascot.

Cogitate ridden by Hollie Doyle on their way to winning the R & M Electrical EBF Novice Stakes at Newbury
Cogitate and Hollie Doyle on their way to winning at Newbury

Charles Hills’ son of Churchill has a nice profile for this race. He’s lightly raced and unexposed and was unlucky to bump into the exciting Night Raider over 7f at Southwell on his re-appearance.

He’s bred to appreciate 1m on a stiff track like this so I’m looking forward to a bold show from what could be a good draw in stall one.

Ground a concern for Billyjoh

It’s a step into the unknown for Mick Appleby’s Billyjoh in the closing cavalry charge, the Buckingham Palace Stakes (6.15).

He’s a solid and reliable sprinter who won over 6f at Ascot last season and has been unlucky a few times on sand and turf, but has never run over 7f.

A big field like this might suit him and I’m happy enough with my high draw in stall 19. My only concern is the likely fast ground as he’s a Mayson who has produced his best on going that doesn’t have the word ‘firm’ in it.

Diamond to sparkle in Ribblesdale

The Group Two Ribblesdale Stakes (3.45) is a mouth-watering highlight which looks at the mercy of Godolphin’s unbeaten filly Diamond Rain.

Diamond Rain ridden by jockey William Buick after winning the Haras De Bouquetot Fillies' Trial Stakes at Newbury
Diamond Rain and William Buick after winning the Haras De Bouquetot Fillies’ Trial Stakes at Newbury

She relished the step up in trip to win a Listed race at Newbury last time and, being out of 2011 Oaks winner Dancing Rain, promises to be even more at home over this 1m 4f.

The form of that race took a timely boost when the runner-up Ejaabiyah bolted up at Salisbury at the weekend so the hat-trick is definitely on the cards.

Hollie Doyle was speaking to Sky Sports Racing’s Simon Mapletoft.

Watch every race from Royal Ascot live on Sky Sports Racing this week.

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