Saturday 20th October – Ascot 2:40 – 1m4f (1m3f211y) QIPCO British Champions Fillies & Mares Stakes (Group 1) (Class 1) (3yo+)
The race was first run in 1946 and was originally called the Princess Royal Stakes. When the current race grading system was introduced in 1971 the Princess Royal Stakes was classified as a Group 3 race. Its status was elevated to Group 2 status in 2008 when it was transferred to Newmarket and was renamed the Pride Stakes. In 2011 it was moved back to Ascot and given its current name when it became part of the card on British Champions Day. It was finally granted Group 1 status in 2013.
The race is open to horses aged three years old and over, and in the 37 renewals since 1979 has only once been won by a horse over the age of four, with Crystal Capella winning in 2010.
The betting is a fair guide to finding the winner with eight of the last 12 winners being found in the first three in the betting. However, bigger priced winners are not to be ruled out as horses with odds of 16/1, 14/1 (twice) and 12/1 have also won in the period.
With six of the last 12 winners winning on their previous start, current winning form can be useful. Also, look out for horses with a recent run as nine of the last 12 winners ran within 37 days of the race. A previous run at Ascot is not as important, as only five of the last 12 winners had run previously run over the course. Winning form over the race distance of 1 mile 4 furlongs is a key requirement as 10 of the last 12 winners previously won at least once over the trip.
Look for horses who have run at least three times earlier in the season as 11 of the last 12 winners had run four times or more before the race and 11 of the 12 had at least one win earlier in the campaign.
An Official Rating of 101 of higher has been required to win the race in nine of the last 12 renewals and eight of the last 12 winners had also previously won a Group race.
God Given will go off at a decent each way price. The four year old Bay Filly won on her last start taking the Group 2 Park Hill Stakes at Doncaster during the St Leger meeting by a neck. Although the race was over 1 mile 6 furlongs she has previously won over 1 mile 4 furlongs three times, all at Listed and Group 3 level, and she is well proven in the Soft ground she will encounter in the race.
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