• Racing/
  • Abseil In Ascot Hunt

Royal Hunt Cup (Heritage Handicap) (Str) 1m

  • (3yo+, 1m, Class 2, 28 runners)
  • Winner £108,938 2nd £32,620 3rd £16,310 4th £8,155 5th £4,078 6th £2,048
  • Going: Good to Firm (Good in Places on the Round Course)
  • Surface: Turf
Weighed In:
  • Winning time: 1m 37.88s
  • Off time: 17:04:48
Full result
Result 17:00 Royal Ascot
Pos Horse Distance/th> Odds
1st 12 Field Of Dream 20/1
2nd 2 Chil The Kite 14/1
3rd 7 Steeler 33/1
4th 22 Sea Shanty s.h 14/1
  • Last Updated: June 17 2014, 15:06 BST

Sir Michael Stoute does not appear to do nerves but it will have been an anxious time at Freemason Lodge around 10am on Monday as he waited to see if red-hot favourite Abseil made the cut for the Royal Hunt Cup.

Abseil crept into the weights for the Royal Hunt Cup
Abseil crept into the weights for the Royal Hunt Cup

He managed to scrape in and is a banker for many who see him as a Group horse in a handicap.

Having won at Epsom on Oaks day, his jockey James Doyle hopes the whole experience of Royal Ascot will not be too much for him.

"He's a relatively inexperienced horse but I think running at Epsom and handling the hustle and bustle of Oaks day will stand him in good stead," said Doyle

"He'll have learned a lot from that and I'm sure the straight mile at Ascot will suit him."

William Haggas has had this race in mind since the end of last season for Queensberry Rules given his penchant for going best fresh. He was third in the Britannia last year.

"It was always the plan to start him off in this," said Haggas.

"He goes best fresh, so we thought we may as well save his first run for this.

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"He might just be a little high in the weights for what he has actually done, but you need to be pretty high these days just to get in.

"Since he last ran he's been cut (gelded) and had a minor wind procedure."

Andrew Balding has two runners with Here Comes When, ridden by Oisin Murphy, and Stirring Ballad, not seen since being sent off co-favourite last year when she met trouble in running.

"Here Comes When was very impressive at Chester. In an ideal world he'd like a bit more give in the ground, but he's in good form and seems relaxed at the moment, so he should run well," Balding told At The Races.

"Stirring Ballad hasn't run since being favourite for last year's race. The biggest issue that day was probably Richard Hughes, which I love to remind him about from time to time! I think it was the one bad ride Hughesie gave a horse all year.

"We said jokingly when we left the car park the brave thing to do would be to wait a year and come back. We didn't mean it, but she's had a number of little issues and that's what's going to happen.

"She's beginning to find her form at home. We could have done with a run beforehand, but she's in good heart and is perfectly suited to a big-field handicap.

"She's Listed-placed and is only rated 97, so she'd be reasonably well handicapped."

Hugo Palmer is confident of a big run from Short Squeeze, a rapid improver last year and also making his seasonal debut.

"I couldn't be any happier. I haven't slept an enormous amount, a combination of excitement and nerves, he's in a great place," said Palmer.

"He's a good moving horse who wouldn't want extremes of ground. He picks his feet up quite high so I wouldn't run him on very firm but he actually does prefer to feel his feet.

"He's a late foal, he didn't turn four until May this year and in keeping with a horse like that he's done very well, he's physically filled out and is a lot stronger.

"It wasn't until August last year that he started showing us on track what he had done at home. I feel he's improved hugely over the winter."

Richard Hannon has two runners, including Sea Shanty for the Queen who only won at Sandown on Saturday.

"We won't know until the race whether this comes too soon for Sea Shanty, but we had to run him in the race to get the penalty that would clinch his place in the field, and he was very brave up the hill," said Hannon on his website, www.richardhannonracing.co.uk

"It would be lovely to win it for Her Majesty, but we also have another strong chance with Trumpet Major, who is Group horse running in a handicap. He lost his way but came right back to form in a first-time tongue-tie at Newmarket, finishing an excellent fourth, and he could run very well."

As Roger Varian's Farraaj was declared a non-runner before 9am, Ed Dunlop's Red Avenger, the first reserve, now gets a run.