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King George VI and Queen Elizabeth Stakes 2018

Home Forums Big Races – Discussion King George VI and Queen Elizabeth Stakes 2018

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  • #1350975
    SteeplechasingSteeplechasing
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    • Total Posts 5770

    I’m very tempted to have my maximum on Cracksman for this but wanted to get the thoughts of forumites.

    It seemed prior to yesterday that Cracksman and Enable were likely to be kept apart until Arc day. But the owner was at Newmarket yesterday for that gallop and made a point of saying he’d like to go for the KG. Gosden also mentioned the possibility of the two meeting in the KG. I’m assuming, perhaps wrongly, that Oppenheimer has all but laid down the law on this, and on that basis am tempted to take my chances at 4/1 (I think Cracksman would be favourite come the day, even with Enable in the field).

    My other concern is the ground. His action suggests they’ll avoid fast ground if they can, perhaps even more so as he’ll be bigger now (although they believe most of the maturing has been mental).

    The KG was run on good to soft last year, but it was good to firm in 2016, 2013 and 2008.

    Thoughts?

    Never argue with a fool. He will drag you down to his level and beat you with experience, then onlookers might not be able to tell the difference. https://lazybet.com/

    #1350990
    DegaussedDegaussed
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    • Total Posts 567

    I do think they will meet here because where else can either of them go?

    A few months ago I sat down and worked out where they are both likely to go, and I came to this conclusion:

    ENABLE: Prep run, Coronation Cup, King George, International, Arc, (maybe Breeders Cup)
    CRACKSMAN: Sheema, Prince of Wales, Eclipse, King George, Irish Champion, Arc.

    I’ve bolded the ones I think are nailed on. The early season plans seem less certain, but from the King George onwards the routes for both write themselves.

    As for the King George itself, until proven otherwise Enable is the superior of the two. Cracksman was mighty at Ascot, but Enable has defeated all before her on different courses and ground and seems bulletproof.

    #1351023
    stevecautionstevecaution
    Blocked
    • Total Posts 8280

    I’ve backed Cracksman at 4/1.

    For me it seems value in what is virtually a coin toss, with the 3rd horse in the current betting 33/1.

    Enable would have beaten Cracksman last season but it’s always a slight question with fillies from 3YO to 4YO. Enable is already rated 128, so it’s kind of unlikely that she will make much progress this year. The Racing Post had Enable at a peak of 129 last season and even the two time Arc winner Treve only exceeded that with 131 at her best ever.

    On the other hand Cracksman started last season as a well advertised “Work in progress” by John Gosden. Cracksman couldn’t quite get it done in either of the Derbies he contested (Much to my chagrin) but he finished the season strongly. It may be that the ground was a factor for him but maybe we should give him credit for maturing and improving late in the season?

    Cracksman looked a little ungainly at times last year. I compared him to the middle distance athlete Peter Elliot at one stage. Perhaps he can come forward this year and look the more complete horse. It’s also worth noting that Cracksman is ahead of Enable on both RPR’s and OR’s by 2 lbs so it’s a tight contest on ratings.

    I feel Cracksman may have more scope to improve this year, and another factor is that Enable is very much being set up for the Arc and I am not sure how hard they will be pushing her in July if the aim is to peak in October? We know that the Prix Ganay in eleven days time is Cracksman’s intended debut and he has first crack at making his case, with probable King GeorgeVI/QE II favouritism to follow with a comeback win.

    I’ve done Cracksman for the Arc as well, at 5/1, for that will surely disappear before the month is out if he wins the Ganay. The Arc isn’t deep looking this year, there may be a few 3YO’s to come but the older horses pool looks the size of a midgie’s bathing pond.

    If you think about the scenario, Cracksman 4/1 to win a King George QE II where Enable may not run, it has to be something to bet strongly on compared to 5/1 for an Arc where we know she WILL be there barring mishaps.

    A scenario for me to have a Max Headroom bet anyway. The potential upside is too strong to miss and I expect to be staring at Oddschecker and seeing smaller numbers after I have cleansed my “coupon” in the May Dew.

    Thanks for the good crack. Time for me to move on. Be lucky.

    #1351041
    LD73
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    • Total Posts 1333

    Don’t see them clashing twice in a season – assuming they go through their respective seasons ok I think it will all lead to a one off clash in Paris in October.

    I am in the minority that believed that Cracksman would have beaten Enable in last years Arc (I think that the stable knew it as well) and I am pretty sure her connections will only want to face him once and that will be in the Arc, which they are gearing her whole campaign around.

    She could be given a light season and it wouldn’t surprise me if the Coronation Cup (early JUne) was bypassed in favour of a more Autumn campaign like the Nassau Stakes, the International & the Arc. If they wanted a run before Goodwood the G1 Grand Prix de Saint-Cloud over 12F at the end of June could be a consideration (Treve won it enroute to her second Arc).

    For me Cracksman’s scope for improvement from 3 to 4 far outweighs hers in my opinion, I think the one advantage she has over him is that she probably has the more instant change of gear but I think if you get him rolling early enough he will cut her down with that relentless stride.

    These built up clashes don’t always live up to the hype (remember the 1st Duel on the Downs) so I just have all fingers and toes crossed that both horses make it in A1 condition come October time and we get the question answered.

    #1352544
    DegaussedDegaussed
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    • Total Posts 567

    Well done to anyone who took 4/1. That was impressive.

    #1352573
    CharlesOlneyCharlesOlney
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    • Total Posts 2050

    All this talk about the big Cracksman-Enable clash but surely we’re overlooking plenty of variables.

    Cracksman may look a good bet now but what happens if something wins the Derby or Irish Derby by 5 lengths and turns up here in receipt of half a stone from his elders?

    #1352576
    LD73
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    • Total Posts 1333

    Wasn’t Workforce the last Derby winner to run in the KG in 2010? In any case most Epsom winners go to the Irish Derby and then swerve the KG for a mid summer break and then an Autumn campaign.

    #1352580
    DegaussedDegaussed
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    • Total Posts 567

    Cracksman may look a good bet now but what happens if something wins the Derby or Irish Derby by 5 lengths and turns up here in receipt of half a stone from his elders?

    Fair point, but just how impressive is something going to have to be for the connections to want to face Cracksman and Enable?

    #1352583
    hein bollowhein bollow
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    • Total Posts 789

    You don’t have to worry about the ground Joe,
    as Cracksman is the best on any going!
    We just don’t know what the connections’ plans really are yet :scratch: ..

    #1352590
    stevecautionstevecaution
    Blocked
    • Total Posts 8280

    i doubt that was a good Ganay today. Rhododendron will have been miles short of fitness and Cloth Of Stars couldn’t even catch his pacemaker. Despite his runner-up spot in the Arc, he has been a bit disappointing. Beaten by Talismanic, who ran like a drain next time and then pulled his chance away behind Hawkbill.

    Cracksman won easy enough but he’ll need a lot more than that going forward. On the plus side, he was nowhere near fully wound up today. He wasn’t fully fit and will look better than that next time we see him. Bookmakers clearly weren’t that impressed, or he would have been 6/4 instead of 5/2 now.

    The Racing Post gave Cracksman 124 today but that involves believing that Wrens Day has run a PB of 116 on RPR’s whilst being used as a sacrificial pacemaker. Wren’s Day came into the race rated 33 lbs behind Cloth Of Stars and who is to say Cloth Of Stars ran anything like his form today. The Fabre horse came into the season with an OR of 125 and despite RPR’s normally being higher than OR’s Cloth Of Stars has run to a RPR of just 114 on all three starts this year. I have to say that I don’t feel Cloth Of Stars is a true G1 performer.

    I expect a much better show from Cracksman next time and I don’t think he ran to 7 lbs behind his personal best today. I suspect 119 or so is more like it.

    Thanks for the good crack. Time for me to move on. Be lucky.

    #1352591
    nwalton
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    • Total Posts 1843

    i was really impressed today, visually he just keeps lengthening and others just cannot live with him, only hope for horses standing their ground is rattling quick ground.( well that’s Cracksman stopped then. lol)

    #1352597
    SteeplechasingSteeplechasing
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    He’s a most unusual horse in that he takes a lot of winding up. Animals like that normally reach top gear and then start drawing steadily clear. Cracksman looks like he’s on a spring and when the winding mechanism hits optimum he just fires away. Was still accelerating passing the post to my eye and He very much looks the real deal.

    Never argue with a fool. He will drag you down to his level and beat you with experience, then onlookers might not be able to tell the difference. https://lazybet.com/

    #1352598
    Nathan HughesNathan Hughes
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    • Total Posts 21536

    I’m not convinced the owner will get his way
    Why didn’t Cracksman run in the Arc last year…? I think it went along the lines of Cracksman will make a better 4 y/o… moments before winning the Champion Stakes by half the track
    Enable was supplemented for the Arc at a fair wedge despite Cracksman running in the Arc trial
    I believe Gosden and Dettori rated Enable better
    I’m not saying Cracksman won’t run in the KG but if Gosden wants to keep the pair of superstars separate one will miss out and it could depend on who’s had a harder previous race or who is in-form at home nearer the time or who they believe is better. If they both ran it would make a great race but I’m not sure Gosden would want them to go at it hammer and nail against eachother at that stage of the season

    Member since March 2008
    #1352602
    Middle_Of_MarchMiddle_Of_March
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    • Total Posts 2614

    Firstly, cracking thread this. Some excellent points made.

    I agree with Nath and expect they will be kept apart and it depends on who’s had the tougher race. I certainly expect the only time they will meet will be in the Arc.

    I personally think Enable is the better horse – plus her Fillies allowance will of course help. Suprised Hein could say cracksman is better based on what we’ve seen. He has the potential to be better if the filly hasn’t trained on but based solely on the evidence we’ve seen, she’s clearly showed classier form (proven on various courses and ground).

    I agree with Steve when he said about the race today. As visually impressive as it was, Cloth of Stars looked in desoerate need of the run whilst Rhododendron has run well short of her best. Cracksmans done tbr job but the performances of his rivals is questionable.

    The King George is a regularly strog race and whilst i expect only one of the pair to run, i woudlnt rule out thr derby winner or Oaks winner (September) running in this.

    I can see the temptation in the price at 4/1 but it wouldnt be for me – even though he likes the track.

    For what its worth, i expect the schedules will be something like:

    Cracksman – Ganay, Prince Of Wales, King George, Irish Champion, Juddmonte, Arc (6 runs)

    Enable – Coronation Cup, Nassau, Yorkshire Oaks, Arc (4 runs)

    I expect Enable will definitely have her prep for the Arc in the Yorkshire Oaks. It seems perfect for her.

    #1352605
    stevecautionstevecaution
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    • Total Posts 8280

    Nobody seems concerned that Cracksman has beaten a horse who was in the race to do a pacemaker’s job. We read from time to time that even sectionals are the best way to run an efficient race and horses who go too fast early tend to pay for it in the closing stages. How then, has Wren’s Day managed to run a huge personal best?

    Wren’s Day came into the Ganay as a horse officially rated 91 and despite running his race as the pace for another runner he has seen off everything bar the winner.

    Of the ones expected to give Cracksman the biggest test, it was an open secret that Rhododendron would be nowhere near fit in the Ganay and her odds drifted like a barge. Rhododendron was put in her place by Enable in the Oaks and despite her good runner-up efforts last season, she never matched her best of 117 from the Racing Post which was recorded when she was 2YO. With all the negatives for her reappearance, she has allegedly run to 110 behind Cracksman. Just 6 lbs short of her L’Opera win from Hydrangea? Really?

    Air Pilot was third in the betting for the Ganay, at roughly 11/2, but he ran like a drain. He was a poor bet because he is a mud lark whose two wins this season had come on Heavy. He’s nowhere near as good on decent going and he couldn’t even manage to beat the 78/1 outsider home.

    I am surprised to see the opinion that Cloth Of Stars needed the race. He’s surely fit by now, having run twice already in March? Connections said that they now know he’s a 12F horse but the bigger problems for him are the fact that he doesn’t look top class and his form is all on soft ground.

    Time will tell of course and I am hoping Cracksman IS top notch this season because I have backed him. I just feel that the hype machine is at work and the Ganay is being overrated for the reasons given above. The Racing Post had the figures for the race up in double quick time and if Rhododendron truly has run so close to her best first time out at 4YO, she’ll surely be managing more than she did throughout her 3YO season?

    Thanks for the good crack. Time for me to move on. Be lucky.

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