Betting a cold trifecta in the King George VI and Queen Elizabeth

Profile Picture: J. Keeler Johnson

July 24th, 2020

The key to handicapping Saturday’s King George VI and Queen Elizabeth (G1) at Ascot in England is theoretically complicated—in order to make a meaningful profit, we’ll have to predict the exact order of finish without a miss.

Normally such a task would be astronomically difficult; in an eight-horse field, there are 40,320 possible outcomes. But predicting the order of finish for the King George—a “Win and You’re In” qualifier for the Breeders’ Cup Turf (G1)—figures to be a decidedly simpler task. Just four horses will face the starter, allotting only 24 possible outcomes. And on paper, there’s a clear pecking order among the four runners.

The overwhelming favorite is the superstar mare #4 Enable, a two-time winner of the prestigious Prix de l’Arc de Triomphe (G1). A 10-time Grade/Group 1 winner racing for the high-profile team of trainer John Gosden and jockey Frankie Dettori, Enable has won two previous editions of the King George while compiling a 10-for-11 record racing 1 1/2 miles, with her lone defeat being a runner-up effort over very soft ground in the 2019 Prix de l’Arc de Triomphe.

Some folks might view Enable as vulnerable since she kicked off 2020 with a loss in the Eclipse (G1) at Sandown, but Enable wasn’t badly beaten by any means while racing over a 1 1/4-mile trip shorter than her best. She wasn’t fully fit for her first start of the season, yet showed tenacity to rally and edge #2 Japan for the runner-up spot, even though Japan had the benefit of a prep run under his belt.

Japan himself is a multiple Group 1 winner who should appreciate stretching back out over 1 1/2 miles, but the talented son of Galileo has lost to Enable in both of their meetings and seems destined to settle for the runner-up spot in the King George. #1 Anthony Van Dyck has gone winless since claiming the 2019 Epsom Derby (G1), but has cracked the trifecta in four Group 1 prizes since then and should out-kick 2019 Irish Derby (G1) winner #3 Sovereign in the battle for third place.

Trifecta wagering (but not superfecta wagering) will be offered on the King George, so we’ll call the order of finish as Enable/Japan/Anthony Van Dyck and bet accordingly:

  • $30 Trifecta: 4 with 2 with 1

Good luck!