Royal Ascot roundup: Love wins to kick off 2021 campaign

Royal Ascot roundup: Love wins to kick off 2021 campaign
Photo: Bob Mayberger/Eclipse Sportswire

Love was all heart when making all under jockey Ryan Moore in the Group 1 Prince Of Wales’s Stakes, the highlight on day two of Royal Ascot.

Racing for the first time in her four-year-old campaign, much was expected of the 11-10 favorite after victories in the 1000 Guineas, Oaks and Yorkshire Oaks last season. Ridden with confidence by Moore – who was recording a 63rd Royal Ascot win – Love kept finding more to repel all challengers and run out a comfortable three-quarter length winner from Audarya (10-1).

[Royal Ascot: U.S.-owned winner has Breeders' Cup ambition]

Love provided trainer Aidan O’Brien with a 75th Royal Ascot success, and owners Coolmore were celebrating a fourth win in this prestigious 10-furlong contest.

Regarding her next target, O'Brien said: “I think everything is open to her, the King George, the Eclipse, whatever the lads decide and whatever they want to do.”

Love won the 1 1/4-mile turf race in 2:06.86.

In Wednesday's other Royal Ascot races:

Windsor Castle. Chipotle provided jockey Charles Bishop and trainer Eve Johnson Houghton with a second Royal Ascot success in the five-furlong Listed Windsor Castle Stakes.

Eyes were drawn early to the pace-setting Frankie Detorri aboard Wesley Ward trainee Ruthin, the 3-1 track favorite. But it was the 22-1 outsider Chipotle who emerged the victor, scything through the far-side pack and pulling away for a 2 1/4-length victory. Dig Two (7-1) took second place, with Boonie (18-1) a head further back in third. Ward's other starter, Golden Bell, finished 16th in the field of 27.

The winner was bouncing back from a lesser effort on soft ground at Sandown Park having won his first two starts – the Brocklesby at Doncaster and the Royal Ascot Two-Year-Old Trial over the course and distance on April 28.

Queen's Vase (G2). Kemari belied his relative inexperience to win the Queen’s Vase over a mile and six furlongs on just his third start. The Godolphin-owned Kemari (15-2) was ridden by William Buick – who was enjoying his 27th Royal Ascot winner – and the combination sat just off the pace before striding clear in the home straight. Favorite Wordsworth (10-3), for Ryan Moore and Aidan O’Brien, was beaten a length and a half in second, with a further length and a quarter back to Stowell (12-1) in third.

Duke of Cambridge (G2). Frankie Dettori enjoyed his 75th Royal Ascot winner aboard 22-1 outsider Indie Angel in the Duke Of Cambridge Stakes. Run over the straight mile, Dettori maneuvered the 4-year-old closest to the stands’ side rail and the duo finished strongly for an impressive 2 1/2-length success. Lady Bowthorpe (7-2) was second, with the 11-4 favorite Queen Power a short head further back in third.

Royal Hunt Cup. Apprentice jockey Marco Ghiani showed there is more than one Italian who can succeed at Royal Ascot when riding his first winner at the meeting on 18/1 shot Real World in the Royal Hunt Cup.

Riding for Godolphin and Saeed bin Suroor – as his fellow countryman Frankie Dettori did successfully for many years – Ghiani stalked the pace in the far-side group during the early stages of the ultra-competitive handicap, before powering clear for an impressive four and three-quarter length success.

Minor honours went to Astro King (11-2 favorite), Grove Ferry (12/1) and Ouzo (33-1), who all emerged from the stands’ side group to chase home the impressive winner.

Kensington Palace. Apprentice jockey Laura Pearson enjoyed her first Royal Ascot success on Lola Showgirl as she led home a one-two for trainer David Loughnane in the Kensington Palace Handicap, the final race of an absorbing day two.

The Kensington Palace over the round mile is a new addition to the Royal Ascot program this year and is restricted to older fillies and mares. Pearson proved tactically astute aboard 12/1 chance Lola Showgirl, fending off stablemate Ffion (10/1) by three-quarters of a length. Waliyak (9/1) made ground late to take third, a neck behind the runner-up.

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