- When: 18th to 22nd June 2024
- Where: Ascot Racecourse, Berkshire, SL5 7JX
- Watch: Most races live on ITV
- Official Website: Royal Ascot
Get set for a festival of flat racing without equal anywhere in the world as Royal Ascot is here! British racing has many things of which it ought to be proud and chief amongst them are these five days at the Berkshire track. Boasting facilities, racing and prestige of the highest order, this is quite simply the best there is in terms of racing bonanzas.
And as always with these bigger events there are plenty of promotions, free bets and other tasty incentives from the bookies to help with betting. On this page we’ll be showcasing the best offers for each day of the festival, updated regularly as new promos come in.
Existing Customer Free Bets & Money Back Offers
Note: Offers will appear here nearer the event as and when they become available.
Royal Ascot Betting Tips
Please note: The following tips are for 2023 and will be updated shortly before the event starts.
The stars are out in force in 2023, with a host of cracking contests in store. The Coronation Stakes and St James’s Palace Stakes provide mouthwatering clashes between the winners of the English and Irish Guineas; we have one of the most wide-open Gold Cups in years, with defending champ Kyprios unfortunately unfit to defend his crown; whilst the major sprint events boast their usual international flavour.
With the British weather seeming set to play ball, we are all set for a truly sizzling week in Berkshire, and here we take a closer look at how the major Group 1 contests are shaping up.
Queen Anne Stakes
Tuesday 20th June, 2:30pm
Godolphin trainer Charlie Appleby now has many of the top prizes in the game on his CV but is yet to land this pot. The Newmarket-based handler will be hoping to tick this one off the list in 2023 and looks to boast strong claims with Modern Games (7/4). An admirable globetrotting star, this son of Dubawi claimed a first domestic Group 1 in the Lockinge Stakes last time out and is fancied by many to follow up. However, this is extremely competitive, and one of Modern Games' major threats may come from his own yard, with 2022 Irish 2,000 Guineas winner Native Trail (8/1) also in the lineup.
The William Haggas runner, Maljoom (8/1), would likely arrive here with a perfect record of four wins from as many starts, but for a luckless effort in last season's St. James’s Palace Stakes. He hasn’t been seen since that day but could go close if returning at the top of his game. Erevann (8/1) flies the flag for France, but the biggest danger to Modern Games may be the filly Inspiral (2/1), who is thoroughly proven at this level and hacked up in the Coronation Stakes at last year’s meeting.
King’s Stand Stakes
Tuesday 20th June, 3:40pm
The fastest event of the week serves as the second of three Group 1 contests on a spectacular opening day, as a field of crack sprinters tackle the 5f course. Leading the charge for the home team – and heading the betting overall – is the marvellous mare Highfield Princess (11/4) from the yard of John Quinn. A dual Group 1 winner over this distance, she could manage only sixth in the Platinum Jubilee here in 2022 but may fare better dropping back to the minimum trip.
Australia claimed this prize last season, as Nature Strip blew his rivals away in one of the most scintillating performances of the meeting. With the speedy duo of Coolangatta (9/2) and Cannonball (10/1) making the considerable trek to Ascot this year, it would be no surprise if the prize were to head down under once more. Other international contenders include Love Reigns (10/1), Twilight Gleaming (20/1) and Big Invasion (20/1) from the USA, and Coeur De Pierre (33/1), who goes for Spanish trainer, Mauricio Delcher Sánchez, who won this with Equiano in 2008.
This can be a tough race for the three-year-olds to tackle their elders, but one who may well be up to the task is the Karl Burke-trained Dramatised (6/1). An impressive winner of the Queen Mary Stakes at last year's meeting, she appeared as well as ever in her comeback success in the Temple Stakes and looks set to go well.
St James’s Palace Stakes
Tuesday 20th June, 4:20pm
A battle of the 2,000 Guineas winners could be in store in this mile event, with both Newmarket champ Chaldean and Curragh hero Paddington featuring prominently amongst the current list of entries. No surprise that the market is struggling to split the pair, who are each priced at around the 2/1 mark. Paddington has been the flashier of the two horses this season courtesy of his excellent turn of foot but it’s hard to knock Chaldean, whose only “defeat” in his past six starts came when unshipping Frankie Dettori as the stalls opened in the Greenham Stakes.
Next in the market comes the Charles Hills runner Cicero’s Gift (7/2). This one hasn’t yet achieved as much as the two ahead of him, but nor has he been beaten, and he certainly looked ready for this step up in class when bolting clear in a Class 2 run at Goodwood last time out.
John Gosden has won this three times in the past nine years and – in partnership with son Thady – will be hoping his Dark Angel colt Mostabshir (7/1) can add to that tally this year. Having displayed an impressive burst of acceleration to score at York last time out, he looks the type to go close. Of those available at bigger prices, the most interesting contender is Joseph O’Brien’s Al Riffa (25/1), who is yet to run this season but looked a star in the making when claiming last year's National Stakes.
Prince Of Wales’s Stakes
Wednesday 21st June, 4:20pm
Four-time winner Aidan O’Brien is responsible for this year's favourite, with his Camelot colt Luxembourg (2/1) sitting atop the market. A winner of six of his nine career starts, he’s a two-time Group 1 winner at this 1m2f trip and warmed up for this by seeing off last season’s Champion Stakes winner, Bay Bridge in the Tattersalls Gold Cup. Bay Bridge (11/2) also goes here and can't be dismissed, with his trainer Sir Michael Stoute matching O’Brien’s tally of four previous wins in the race.
Only just behind Luxembourg in the market is Charlie Appeleby’s 2021 Epsom Derby winner, Adayar (9/4). Things haven’t gone smoothly for this colt since that Classic success, but his three most recent runs have been much more like it. An easy winner of the Gordon Richards Stakes last time out, he shouldn’t be far away.
Of those available at bigger prices, French raider Simca Mile (16/1) boasts solid form in this grade, Above The Curve (33/1) is a Group 1 winner over this trip and bounced back to form last time out, and Light Infantry (40/1) went down by just a short neck in a similar contest in France on his most recent outing.
Thursday 22nd June, 4:20pm
Another Ascot Group 1, and another race in which Aidan O’Brien tops the all-time trainer's table, with eight previous wins to his name. Defending champion Kyprios may miss out through injury, but O’Brien still looks set to make a bold bid for win number nine, with five regally bred sorts amongst the current list of entries. Of that quintet, Emily Dickinson (13/2) would appear to boast the strongest claims, having hinted that this sort of test may suit when landing the Loughbrown Stakes over two miles at the Curragh last season.
Excellent as O’Brien’s record is, it is a pair of British-based horses who are currently vying for favouritism, with St Leger winner Eldar Eldarov, and Coltrane priced at around the 3/1 mark. Coltrane looks particularly interesting, having shown this trip holds no fears when landing the Ascot Stakes over course and distance.
Looking further down the list, Group 1 winner Yibir (10/1) could prove dangerous if handling this step up in trip, Subjectivist (10/1) won this in grand style in 2021 before missing the whole of last season, and top-class hurdler Echoes In Rain (14/1) looks an intriguing entry for Willie Mullins.
Friday 23rd June, 4:20pm
The biggest three-year-old sprint of the season serves as the first leg of a Group 1 double act on Friday. Aidan O’Brien’s Little Big Bear heads the betting, having bounced back from his 2,000 Guineas flop with an easy win in the Group 2 Sandy Lane Stakes. The best juvenile sprinter around last year, he’s a 15/8 shot to confirm that he still leads the way.
Chief amongst the opposition are three more runners who disappointed in the Newmarket Classics – Sakheer (4/1), Lezoo (10/1) and Noble Style (12/1). Sakheer boasts the most attractive profile of that trio, whilst Lezoo has the benefit of a previous win over the course and distance.
Julie Camacho’s Shaquille (8/1) has progressed from a rating of 84 to one of 111 in the space of his last four starts. Now seeking a five-timer, he may possess the talent to strike a blow for the smaller yards.
Friday 23rd June, 5:00pm
The meeting's major event for the three-year-old fillies looks set to be a cracker, as 1,000 Guineas first and second Mawj (11/4) and Tahiyra (10/11) lock horns once more. Separated by just half a length at HQ, Mawj showed the benefit of race fitness in the closing stages that day, as Tahiyra gave way close home. Back on a quicker surface and with that run under her belt, Tahiyra made no mistake when forging clear in the Irish 1,000. Perhaps the ground will be in her favour here, but the ultra-tough Mawj won't go down without a fight.
Jessica Harrington has won this twice in the space of the past five years, and her Kingman filly, Sounds Of Heaven (12/1), looks one of the more interesting each contenders, having scored in tenacious style on her comeback outing at York. And don’t ignore French raider Jannah Rose (12/1). Sired by the mighty Frankel, she’s unbeaten in three, already a Group 1 winner, and may go close under Christophe Soumillon.
Queen Elizabeth II Jubilee Stakes
Saturday 24th June, 3:40pm
Just the one Group 1 event on the closing day, but it’s a cracker, as an international field assembles for this six-furlong sprint affair. Australia are the most likely winners according to the market, with dual Group 1 scorer Artorius (4/1) out on his own at the head of the betting. Aussie sprinters are always to be feared at this meeting, and it would be no surprise if this Anthony and Sam Freedman star joined the likes of Nature Strip and Choisir in the history books.
If not Australia, then perhaps Hong Kong will prevail, with the Richard Gibson-trained Wellington (7/1) widely expected to go well, having already won four times at the top level.
Highfield Princess (8/1) is rated the pick of the home team and may well run in both this race and the King’s Stand on the opening day. Ralph Beckett’s Kinross (10/1) won over this track and trip on Champion’s Day and could go well, but probably needs the rain to arrive. William Haggas’s Sacred (10/1), meanwhile, looks a solid each-way option, having gone down by only a length in the 2022 edition, despite being a little unlucky in running.
Royal Ascot Race Winning Trainers in 2023
|Trainer||Total Wins||Group 1||Group 2||Group 3||Other|
|John & Thady Gosden||4||2||1||0||1|
|Joseph Patrick O’Brien||2||0||0||0||2|
|William Muir & Ed Grassick||1||0||1||0||0|
Royal Ascot Race Winning Jockeys in 2023
|Jockey||Total Wins||Group 1||Group 2||Group 3||Other|
|John R Velazquez||1||0||1||0||0|
|P J McDonald||1||0||1||0||0|
Tuesday 18th June 2024
- 2:30pm – Queen Anne Stakes (Group 1)
- 3:05pm – Coventry Stakes (Group 2)
- 3:40pm – King’s Stand Stakes (Group 1)
- 4:20pm – St James’s Palace Stakes (Group 1)
- 5:00pm – Ascot Stakes
- 5:35pm – Wolferton Stakes (Listed)
- 6:10pm – Copper Horse Handicap
Wednesday 19th June 2024
- 2:30pm – Queen Mary Stakes (Group 2)
- 3:05pm – Kensington Palace Fillies’ Handicap
- 3:40pm – Duke Of Cambridge Stakes (Group 2)
- 4:20pm – Prince Of Wales’s Stakes (Group 1)
- 5:00pm – Royal Hunt Cup
- 5:35pm – Queen’s Vase (Group 2)
- 6:10pm – Windsor Castle Stakes (Listed)
Thursday 20th June 2024 (Ladies Day)
- 2:30pm – Norfolk Stakes (Group 2)
- 3:05pm – King George V Stakes
- 3:40pm – Ribblesdale Stakes (Group 2)
- 4:20pm – Gold Cup (Group 1)
- 5:00pm – Britannia Stakes
- 5:35pm – Hampton Court Stakes (Group 3)
- 6:10pm – Buckingham Palace Stakes
Friday 21st June 2024
- 2:30pm – Albany Stakes (Group 3)
- 3:05pm – Commonwealth Cup (Group 1)
- 3:40pm – Duke Of Edinburgh Stakes
- 4:20pm – Coronation Stakes (Group 1)
- 5:00pm – Sandringham Stakes
- 5:35pm – King Edward VII Stakes (Group 2)
- 6:10pm – Palace Of Holyrood House Stakes
Saturday 22nd June 2024
- 2:30pm – Chesham Stakes (Listed)
- 3:05pm – Jersey Stakes (Group 3)
- 3:40pm – Queen Elizabeth II Jubilee Stakes (Group 1)
- 4:20pm – Hardwicke Stakes (Group 2)
- 5:00pm – Wokingham Stakes
- 5:35pm – Golden Gates Stakes
- 6:10pm – Queen Alexandra Stakes
Please note that the above schedule is subject to confirmation
About Royal Ascot
Ascot Racecourse is in Berkshire, England and plays host to the Royal Meeting every year. It’s one of the most prestigious horse racing events in the world and is so called because of the attendance of the British monarchy.
The first Royal Ascot meeting was held way back in 1711, which is the same year that Queen Anne opened the Ascot Racecourse. Since then it’s gone on to become a hot bed for Royal visitors with Queen Elizabeth II having been a regular visitor in the modern era. Other members of the Royal family such as The Prince of Wales arrive each day in a horse-drawn carriage and a Royal procession takes place before any racing gets underway. This is also when the King’s Royal Standard is raised above the course.
Royal Ascot is one of British racing’s best-attended meetings, thanks to the three hundred thousand plus people that make the trip to Berkshire to see the races. The Festival takes place over five days, usually in June, and throughout those five days attracts the biggest names in flat racing from around the globe. Ladies Day offers the Gold Cup, which is one of few races not to have been renamed in honour of a member of the Royal Family.
In 2012, for example, the Golden Jubilee Stakes became the Diamond Jubilee Stakes after the Queen reached her Diamond Jubilee. This then became the Platinum Jubilee stakes in 2022. After the Queen’s passing in 2022, this race will be known as the Queen Elizabeth II Jubilee Stakes. The Windsor Forest Stakes became the Duke of Cambridge Stakes in 2013 when Prince William was bestowed with his new title. Some Royal races have been removed from the race card over the years, such as the Buckingham Palace Stakes being replaced by the Commonwealth Cup in 2015, though this returned in 2020.
The Royal Ascot Festival is seen as an important date in the social calendar of the country’s rich and famous. The national press covers the likes of who is at the event, what they’re wearing and other such information. It’s even to the extent that it can often be harder to find out information about the racing than what the Princess of Wales was wearing.
The Royal Enclosure
The course boasts three main enclosures that are used by the members of the Royal Family. The most prestigious of Ascot’s three enclosures is unquestionably the Royal Enclosure, which hosted the Queen on numerous occasions. When the monarch is present access is restricted to it, for obvious reasons. Should you wish to attend, you’ll have to apply to the Royal Enclosure Office with your application sponsored by someone that’s been in the Enclosure for at least four previous years.
Those that are successful in their applications are given badges with their names inscribed on them that can only be used by them. There’s a strict dress code in place, with women having to wear day dresses and a hat, whilst men must wear morning suits including a top hat. Women are also not allowed to bare their shoulders or midriff whilst in the enclosure, with men’s suits needing to be either black or grey.
Format of the Royal Meeting at Ascot
As mentioned, Royal Ascot is set over five days and each of those days brings in a mix of races, some higher profile than others. One thing worth noting is that every day of the Festival, which always gets underway on a Tuesday, boasts at least one Group 1 race.
There are seven races each day in with a total of thirty five over the duration of Royal Ascot. It would take too long to give you an in-depth look at every single race, but here’s a quick explanation of each day as well as a closer look at each of the Group 1 races.
Tuesday Races (2023)
|Group 1s||Group 2s||Listed Races||Handicaps||Total Prize Money|
Tuesday is the opening day of Royal Ascot which starts with the Queen Anne Stakes, a race for four-year-olds and older over one mile. Four horses have won it twice, with Frankie Dettori being the most successful jockey thanks to his seven wins. Saeed bin Suroor is the race’s most successful trainer, also boasting seven wins to date.
The second race is the six furlong Coventry Stakes which is followed by another sprint race in the King’s Stand Stakes. This is over five furlongs and is for three-year-olds and older. Created as a result of bad weather in 1860, twelve horses have won it twice and the most recent of them was Blue Point in 2018 and 2019. Lester Piggott has won the race more than any other jockey with seven wins, only one of which was trained by the race’s leading trainer Vincent O’Brien, who’s trained five winners in total.
The third Group 1 of the day comes in race four with the St James’s Palace Stakes. This was inaugurated in 1834 and is another race over one mile. It’s specifically for three-year-old colts, meaning no horse can win it more than once. Michael Kinane has won the race six times and leads the jockeys, with Aidan O’Brien being the most successful trainer thanks to his eight wins.
The other races on Day 1 are the Ascot Stakes Handicap, the Listed Wolferton Stakes and finally the Copper Horse Stakes Handicap.
Wednesday Races (2023)
|Group 1s||Group 2s||Listed Races||Handicaps||Total Prize Money|
Day two only includes one Group 1 race but this is the Prince of Wales’s Stakes, the joint most valuable race of the meeting at £1,000,000. It is run over one mile and two furlongs and is for horses aged four and older. Three horses have won the race twice, whilst Morny Cannon has won more races than any other jockey with six. John Porter, meanwhile, is the race’s most successful trainer thanks to his eight wins between 1888 and 1905.
Leading up to the Prince Of Wales’s Stake there are two Group 2 contests in the form of The 5f Queen Mary Stakes and the 1m Duke Of Cambridge Stakes, as well as the Kensington Palace Stakes Handicap. Also on Day 2 there is the Group 2 Queen’s Vase, the Royal Hunt Cup Heritage Handicap and the Listed Windsor Castle Stakes.
Thursday Races (2023)
|Group 1s||Group 2s||Group 3s||Handicaps||Total Prize Money|
Day three, Ladies Day, sees arguably the biggest race of the entire meeting, the Ascot Gold Cup. This Group 1 is one of the longest races, taking place over two miles and four furlongs. It is the only Group 1 race on the Thursday.
The Gold Cup is open to horses aged four and over and is the most prestigious of British racing’s events for ‘stayers’ and is leg one of the Stayers’ Triple Crown. If you’re interested, the Goodwood Cup and the Doncaster Cup are the other two. John Gosden’s Stradivarius won all three races in 2019, no other horse had done so since Double Trigger in 1995. The race was inaugurated in 1807 as a race for horses aged three and up, watched by King George III and Queen Charlotte.
Yeats won the race four times consecutively from 2006 to 2009, making him the most successful horse. Lester Piggott is unquestionably its most successful jockey thanks to his eleven wins, whilst Aidan O’Brien added four other wins to those of Yeats to make him the Gold Cup’s most successful trainer.
Ladies Day opens with the Group 2 Norfolk Stakes over 5f and is followed by the King George V Stakes handicap. Next is the Ribblesdale Stakes over 1m 4f, a race for three-year-old fillies, many of which would have competed in the Epsom Oaks earlier in the month.
After the Gold Cup we end the day with the Britannia Stakes, the Group 3 Hampton Court Stakes and the Buckingham Palace Stakes. The final race, the Buckingham Palace Handicap, is a race over seven furlongs. This made a Royal Ascot reappearance from 2020, having been replaced in the schedule by the Group 1 Commonwealth Cup in 2015.
Friday Races (2023)
|Group 1s||Group 2s||Group 3s||Handicaps||Total Prize Money|
Friday boasts four Group races, which come in the form of the Commonwealth Cup, the Coronation Stakes, the King Edward VII Stakes and the Albany Stakes. Rounding out the card are three handicaps in the form of the Sandringham Stakes, the Duke Of Edinburgh Stakes and the Palace Of Holyroodhouse Stakes.
The Group 1 Commonwealth Cup was first run in 2015 and is a race for three-year-olds. It is run over six furlongs and at the time of writing no trainer has won it more than once but Frankie Dettori has ridden two winners. The only person to boast more than one victory is the Owner Hamdan Al Maktoum also boasts two victories having won the inaugural race and again in 2018.
The day’s other Group 1 is the Coronation Stakes. This is open to three-year-old fillies and is over seven furlongs and two hundred and sixteen yards. It was established in 1840 and was designed to commemorate the coronation of Queen Victoria in 1838. When grading was introduced in its current form in 1971 the Coronation Stakes was a Group 2 race, becoming Group 1 in 1988. Both Nat Flatman and Morny Cannon have won it five times as jockeys, whilst John Porter is the leading trainer thanks to his six victories.
Saturday Races (2023)
|Group 1s||Group 2s||Group 3s||Listed Races||Handicaps||Other||Total Prize Money|
Saturday is the final day of Royal Ascot and it boasts a race card with three group races, a listed race, two handicaps and a class 2 conditions race. The opening race is the Listed Chesham Stakes, which is followed by the Group 3 Jersey Stakes.
The headliner on Saturday comes next in the form of the final Group 1 race of the meeting, the Queen Elizabeth II Jubilee Stakes. This was established in 1868 as the All-Aged Stakes. That name is reflected in the fact that it is open for horses aged four and over, though those aged three are eligible if they were foaled in the Southern Hemisphere. The Queen Elizabeth II Jubilee Stakes is raced over six furlongs and was a Group 3 race when groups were introduced in 1971. It shifted to a Group 2 race 1998 and then a Group 1 when it was given the name of the Golden Jubilee in 2002.
In 2005 the race became part of the Global Sprint Challenge and by 2013 was the sixth leg. The most successful horse in the race’s history is the appropriately named Prince Charlie, who won three times in a row from 1872 to 1874. A name that is all too common to fans of Ascot racecourse leads the way for jockeys, with Lester Piggott picking up ten wins during his career. Vincent O’Brien was responsible for five of those as trainer, setting the record.
Race four is the Group 2 Hardwicke Stakes, the next two races are handicaps in the form of the Wokingham Stakes and the Golden Gates Stakes. The meeting comes to a close with the Class 2 Queen Alexandra Stakes.
In 2015 Ryan Moore rode an amazing nine winners at the meeting, surpassing the previous record of eight set by Pat Eddery in 1989 and Lester Piggott in both 1965 and 1975. Even so, the actual record for the most winners in one meeting is actually twelve, set by Fred Archer in 1878. Moore’s record of nine winners is thought of to be the more iconic, due to the fact that it happened in the modern era.
In 2023 the total prize money on offer throughout the meeting exceeded £9.57 million, topping the previous high of £8.6 million in 2022. No race throughout the five days will command prize money lower than £100,000, with the Prince Of Wales’s Stakes and the Queen Elizabeth II Jubilee Stakes jointly the most valuable at £1,000,000 in 2023.
Royal Ascot Most Valuable Races (2023)
|Race Name||Prize Fund||Winner||Second||Third|
|Prince of Wales’s Stakes||£1,000,000||£567,100||£215,000||£107,600|
|Queen Elizabeth II Jubilee Stakes||£1,000,000||£567,100||£215,000||£107,600|
|Queen Anne Stakes||£750,000||£425,325||£161,250||£80,700|
|King’s Stand Stakes||£627,500||£355,855||£134,912||£67,519|
|St James’s Palace Stakes||£600,000||£340,260||£129,000||£64,560|
|Ascot Gold Cup||£600,000||£340,260||£129,000||£64,560|
In 2005 the Royal Meeting was held at York for the first and only time in its long history. The racecourse was closed for a period of twenty months due to a £185 million redevelopment, which included the construction of a new grandstand.
The meeting normally sees around three hundred thousand visitors over the five days, which equates to almost 10% of the total national attendance at horse racing throughout the year. Over £350 million is generated on betting via the eleven Group 1 races that are part of the meeting. There are some other interesting facts too, with the following being the best of them:
- Ascot Racecourse is the setting for one of the scenes in the musical My Fair Lady
- That is not the only popular culture reference to the racecourse, however. James Bond watched a horse race featuring the villain of A View To A Kill, Max Zorin, in the 1985 film from the franchise
- The James Bond franchise returned to Royal Ascot in 2012’s Skyfall when the racecourse doubled for Shanghai Pudong International Airport
- In the middle of the racecourse stands the ground of Royal Ascot Cricket Club, which was founded in 1897
- There’s another sports club at Ascot Racecourse with Ascot United Football Club being based in the east of the site