first_imgDel Mar, Deauville, Ascot, Meydan … and Hamilton. It is all in a day’s work for Sands Of Mali, the unexpected winner of the Group One Sprint on Champions Day last October, who will add the Scottish track to his impressively varied CV when he makes his first start of the year in Britain on Thursday.Hamilton deserve plenty of credit for pulling together the six-runner field for the British Stallion Studs Clyde Conditions Stakes, worth £17,000 to the winner, as Sands Of Mali is not the only Group One winner going to post. Talking Horses: Kieran Shoemark gets back on track after cocaine ban Support The Guardian Hide … we have a small favour to ask. More people are reading and supporting The Guardian’s independent, investigative journalism than ever before. And unlike many new organisations, we have chosen an approach that allows us to keep our journalism accessible to all, regardless of where they live or what they can afford. 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Share via Email Read more features Twitter Share on Messenger Pinterest Thank you for your feedback. Talking Horses Magna Grecia pictured winning the 2,000 Guineas at Newmarket. Photograph: Mike Egerton/PA Hamilton 2.00 Makyon 2.30 Alexander James 3.00 Onda District 3.30 Sands Of Mali 4.00 Strong Steps 4.30 Zig Zag Zyggy 5.00 Boundsy Haydock Park 2.10 Smeaton 2.40 Masaakin 3.10 Dubai Station 3.40 Tomahawk Ridge 4.10 Boundary Lane 4.40 Enough Already 5.10 Correggio  Ripon 2.20 Praxeology 2.50 Neileta 3.20 Aiya 3.50 Universal Gleam (nap) 4.20 Magical Spirit (nb) 4.50 Maamora 5.20 Funkadelic Chelmsford 5.25 Above 6.00 Goodnight Girl 6.30 Fields Of Athenry 7.05 Romola 7.35 Whimbrel 8.05 Tahreek 8.40 Croeso Cymraeg Ffos Las 5.35 Butlergrove King 6.10 Broughtons Rhythm 6.40 Bally Longford 7.15 Baiser Interdit 7.45 Victarion 8.15 Alltimegold 8.50 Belmont Jewel  O’Brien also strengthened his hand for the Royal meeting on Wednesday when it was revealed that Hermosa, already the 1,000 Guineas winner in England and Ireland this spring, will miss the French Oaks at Chantilly to run instead in the Coronation Stakes on day four of Royal Ascot.Hermosa was a 3-1 chance for the Coronation Stakes overnight but shortened to a top price of 7-4 following confirmation that she will attempt to emulate O’Brien’s filly Winter, who took both Guineas and then followed up at Ascot two seasons ago. Share on Twitter Brando, a classy and prolific at Pattern level for several seasons now, also has a win in the 2017 Prix Maurice Du Gheest to his name, and though Donjuan Triumphant, the third runner with a realistic chance, has not won at the highest level, he was placed behind Sands Of Mali at Ascot eight months ago.It is a remarkably strong contest for what is normally a fallow time between the Derby meeting and Royal Ascot and even the fact that it will be run on testing ground should not detract too much from the spectacle as all three of the main contenders have form on soft going.The ground should, in fact, be more to the liking of Sands of Mali (3.30) than the sounder surface at Meydan in March, when he finished only sixth in the Al Quoz Sprint. He made all to win on good-to-soft at Ascot last October and both the race conditions – all six runners carry 9st 4lb – and the lack of an obvious opponent for the lead will be in his favour as he attempts to do the same this time.Elsewhere on the Hamilton card, Zig Zag Zyggy (4.30) is up just 3lb for a recent course-and-distance win in a good time, while Boundsy (5.00) should also go well in the final event. Universal Gleam (3.50) and Magical Spirit (4.20) both have strong chances at Ripon, while Fields Of Athenry (6.30) is the pick in the one-mile handicap at Chelmsford in the evening, a fascinating race in which all six runners are priced between 9-4 and 17-2.Grecia hopeful for Ascot after Guineas flopMagna Grecia, one of the first horses beaten in last month’s Irish 2,000 Guineas, remains among the possible runners for an outstanding renewal of the St James’s Palace Stakes at Royal Ascot in 13 days’ time after he was found to have pulled a hamstring when returning to light exercise after his run at The Curragh.Magna Grecia was the first of Aidan O’Brien’s three Classic winners in Britain so far this season when he took the 2,000 Guineas at Newmarket on the first weekend in May. He was then sent off as the 6-4 joint-favourite for the Irish equivalent alongside Too Darn Hot, last year’s top juvenile, but faded rapidly from three furlongs out behind the 16-1 winner, Phoenix Of Spain.At the time, it seemed possible that a draw close to the stands’ rail might have exaggerated Magna Grecia’s superiority at Newmarket but the news that a minor physical problem emerged following his poor run in Ireland will offer reassurance to punters if he makes the line-up for the feature race on Royal Ascot’s opening day.Phoenix Of Spain and Too Darn Hot are also on course to run in the St James’s Palace Stakes, where they could be joined by Persian King, the French 2,000 Guineas winner, and King Of Comedy, a stable companion of Too Darn Hot at the John Gosden yard. King Of Comedy took the Heron Stakes at Sandown on 23 May, the same race which Gosden won in 2018 with the subsequent St James’s Palace winner, Without Parole. Was this helpful? Since you’re here… Show Royal Ascot 2019 Aidan O’Brien Reuse this content Share on LinkedIn Royal Ascot Share on Facebook Share on Pinterest Share on WhatsApp Quick guide Thursday tips Facebook Topics Horse racinglast_img

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