Martyn Meade favouring crack at Commonwealth Cup at Royal Ascot

Advertise (left) wins the July Stakes
Advertise (left) wins the July Stakes

Martyn Meade is leaning towards running his Group One-winning stable star Advertise in the Commonwealth Cup at Royal Ascot.

Advertise features among 16 entries left in St James’s Palace Stakes, over a mile, on the opening day of the Royal Meeting on Tuesday but Meade says his colt, who disappointed when a leading fancy for the QIPCO 2000 Guineas at Newmarket on his reappearance, is instead more likely to revert to sprinting at the meeting.

The St James’s Palace Stakes and Commonwealth Cup, which both carry prize-money of £500,000, are among eight races at Royal Ascot that fall under the QIPCO British Champions Series umbrella. The Commonwealth Cup forms part of the Sprint Category.

Advertise’s exploits as a two-year-old included winning the Keeneland Phoenix Stakes over six furlongs at the Curragh plus finishing runner-up in the Coventry Stakes (behind Calyx) and Darley Dewhurst Stakes (behind Too Darn Hot).

"The Commonwealth Cup is cutting up a little bit and he did pretty well last year as a two-year-old over six furlongs so we are favouring that option," Meade said.

"Based on his homework and everything, we think he will be quick enough for that race and so that’s what we are favouring. We’d be looking for the ground to dry out a bit and a strong pace. There looks to be a few in there likely to provide that."

Meade, seeking a first winner at the Royal meeting, believes Advertise was under the weather when finishing 15th of 19 runners in the QIPCO 2000 Guineas.

"We have to put a line through that run as it was obviously not him," the Manton-based trainer said. "He should have finished much closer. It was not a disaster but I was expecting much better than that.

"One can only put it down to the fact that he was a little bit below-par. It must have been one of those untraceable viruses because everything else was right with him. We scoped him immediately after the race and his blood was perfect.

"It's why we had a month off and hopefully he will now reproduce what he is capable of. His form ties in with all the top two-year-old performers – he’s just got to reproduce it. I’ve been happy with the way the horses have been running since we called a halt."

Sea Of Class is backed for Royal Ascot glory
Sea Of Class is backed for Royal Ascot glory

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