The Jaber Abdullah-owned four-year-old, who finished a fine second to Gilt Edged Girl in last season's Group 1 Prix de l'Abbaye at Longchamp in October, is reported “under a cloud” at present and Abdullah's racing manager Bruce Raymond was categorical in confirming that the daughter of Rahy will not be seen in action this month. He suggested that if she recovers from her ailment then there is a chance she might well be back in time for the July Cup at Newmarket, but if not then connections will take their time with her and train the quality sprinter for an autumn campaign that could include the Haydock Sprint Cup and another crack at the big Longchamp sprint at the end of the term. Those who had placed a Royal Ascot bonus bet will still be very disappointed though.
Lady Of The Desert had been prominent in the ante-post markets for both the King's Stand Stakes and the Golden Jubilee Stakes on the back of a series of fine performances over the last couple of seasons. As well as her outstanding effort in Paris in October, Meehan's charge won the Group 2 Diadem Stakes at Ascot last September having a month earlier chased home Markab in the Betfred Sprint Cup at Haydock. Those following the Royal Ascot betting tips will now have to look elsewhere.
Australian speedster Star Witness remains the 5/1 ante-post favourite for the King's Stand Stakes, with last season's Nunthorpe Stakes winner and recent Temple Stakes victor Sole Power next in the list at 8/1. The rejuvenated Delegator, runner-up to the mighty Sea The Stars in the 2000 Guineas of 2009 heads the betting for the Golden Jubilee Stakes on the final day of the fixture, being generally on offer at 5/1 having returned to form with a vengeance when dropped back in trip to land the Duke of York Stakes in style on the Knavesmire last month for Godolphin.