Five British stars to watch at 2022 Royal Ascot
Tuesday – Baaeed in the Queen Anne (G1)
Likely the shortest-priced favorite of the entire five-day meeting, Baaeed brings a perfect 7-for-7 mark into the Tuesday opener. The champion miler boasts a win over this course and distance in last fall’s Queen Elizabeth II (G1), and he warmed up with a stylish display in the May 14 Lockinge (G1). Trainer William Haggas has had a hot hand of late as well, adding to the reasons why Baaeed should be very tough to beat.
Wednesday – Bay Bridge in the Prince of Wales’s (G1)
Unlike the other British stars on this list, Bay Bridge isn’t a champion, but he looks like one possibly in the making. Stepping up to Group company for the first time in the May 26 Brigadier Gerard (G3) at Sandown, he romped over a solid field and propelled himself to favoritism here. Bay Bridge fits the mold of the classic improver as an older horse for Sir Michael Stoute.
Thursday – Stradivarius in the Gold Cup (G1)
Already a legend as a three-time winner of this race, Stradivarius was a troubled fourth last summer when trying to tie Yeats’s record of four Gold Cup (G1) victories. The great stayer retains all of his character and enthusiasm for the game, at the advanced age of eight, as a horse with a stud career still beckoning. John and Thady Gosden’s veteran proved the point by taking the Yorkshire Cup (G2) for the third time, setting himself up to tackle Ascot rivals both old and new.
Friday – Inspiral in the Coronation (G1)
Last year’s standout two-year-old filly took a while to blossom this spring, prompting the Gosdens to postpone her comeback until now. Inspiral thus missed the 1000 Guineas (G1), but the longtime antepost favorite saw her form upheld in absentia at Newmarket. Now the unbeaten daughter of Frankel aims to regain her position as the leader of her generation, albeit in a hot race off the bench.
Saturday – Hurricane Lane in the Hardwicke (G2)
Godolphin trainer Charlie Appleby has had this spot mapped out as the launching pad for Hurricane Lane. Hero of the 2021 Irish Derby (G1), Grand Prix de Paris (G1), and St Leger (G1), the Frankel colt was last seen placing a gallant third in the Prix de l’Arc de Triomphe (G1). A return trip to Paris in October is the main goal and organizing principle of his 2022 campaign.