ASCOT GOES TOP OF THE WORLD STAGE: That’s Daqman’s verdict as he names the horses and trainers to follow from a sensational meeting, which saw Frankel and Black Caviar enter royal-racing history, one by a mile one by inches.

A DOZEN BIG WINNERS FOR DAQMAN: Daqman’s own meeting was world class. Here are his day-by-day winners, culminating in yesterday’s near-miss treble (two winners and a second) on the day he almost pipped Black Caviar (Moonlight Cloud 2nd 5-1 from 13.0 on BETDAQ):

MOST IMPROVED (WON 9-1), Tuesday (Ten To Follow)
ISHVAN (WON 20-1), Wednesday (win-20 bet)
JOVIALITY (WON 11-1 from 16.5), Wednesday (win-30 jackpot bet)
DUNTLE (WON 4-1), Wednesday (jackpot saver)
PRINCESS HIGHWAY (WON 17-2), Thursday (win-30 jackpot bet)
COLOUR VISION (WON 6-1), Thursday (Ten To Follow)
FAME AND GLORY (LAY) (unplaced 4-5 favourite), Thursday.
ENERGIZER (WON 15-2), Thursday (win-20 each-way bet)
NEWFANGLED (WON 7-4), Friday saver
THA’IR (WON 9-2), Saturday (win-20)
SEA MOON (WON 3-1), Saturday (Ten To Follow)
BLACK CAVIAR (WON 1-6), Saturday nap and trebles banker
CAMBORNE (WON 11-2), Saturday saver

My Ten To Follow was most improved. I marked down three winners in advance of Royal Ascot at 9-1, 6-1 and 3-1 SP. I will be revising the Ten in the next week or so in time for the July meeting, the Irish Derby and the Ebor festival at York.

Meanwhile here are my notes from the Ascot bag of class races, mixed with the memories of one of the best meetings ever staged in my lifetime.

BONNIE BRAE, BOOM AND BUST, CAI SHEN: These are horses to take out of the Royal Hunt Cup because Bonnie’s stable was badly out of form; Boom was bust by not having raced for 327 days; and Cai Shen, though drawn on the wrong side, finished out of the frame by less than a length.

I shall be looking for odds about this trio in future handicaps particularly Cai Shen in the Cambridgeshire, as he was running on stoutly over the fast-run mile.

DAWN APPROACH: That’s the last time I call Gentleman Jim ‘a loser’. He’s had a modest year by his standards but the Bolger stable’s flagship Coventry Stakes winner, Dawn Approach, is, as they say, ‘something else’.

NEW APPROACH: You won’t see New Approach on the racecourse but this sire’s ghost was fleshed out with a sensational first-season-sire hat-trick of juvenile winners never seen before at Ascot, or at least rivaling his own sire, Galileo, son of Sadler’s Wells.

The Northern Dancer line which gave back British racing its fabulous prestige in the last 30 years of the 20th century is alive and well, excelling in the 21st.

DUNTLE, ARSAADI: Though the low draw had been doing best at that stage of the meeting, Duntle powered home from stall 18 on only the fourth run of her life in the Sandringham handicap and should get some black type before the season’s end.

Second was Arsaadi, a huge attempt by William Haggas to land a coup with first-time blinkers (he’d already done that trick in a decent handicap the previous Saturday)

FRANKEL: Every time he runs, we say ‘he’s the finished article now,’ which shows he’s getting better and better. In fact, he went six lengths further away from Excelebration compared with the Lockinge form but the manner of his victory – waited with; smooth, powerful headway – was all class.

To think I still had him labelled a front-runner (what a wag!) and that I used to agree with Peter Moody: ‘I’m staggered they can keep improving Frankel’s rating though he beats the same horses.’ I would like to see something give him a race, though.

BLACK CAVIAR, MOONLIGHT CLOUD, RESTIADARGENT: It was almost the Moody blues, and the heart of the Australian nation missed a beat, when Luke Nolen eased down Black Caviar.

This was racing history twice – after Frankel – at the same race meeting, lofting Ascot 2012 to the top of the world stage in jubilee year. Beat that, Breeders Cup!

Moonlight Cloud looks nailed on for a Group success before the season’s over; whether she will have the speed for the July Cup is debatable; her trip is 7f.

And the one to take out of the race must surely be the three-year-old: Restiadargent stepped up 20lb on previous form, or Black Caviar is herself only a 120 not a 132.

Black Caviar is not the rocket that we see in Australia; she’s a meteor, a heavyweight hurtler at 45 mph. Yes, you heard right: such is her massive bone density, her racing weight is more than Denman!

ESTIMATE, SEA MOON: Whatever the reason for Sir Michael Stoute’s slow start, and modest returns in the season to Derby time, he made up for it with a master class of training at Royal Ascot, first with Estimate to win the Queen’s Vase for Her Majesty.

Then the old Stoute stepped forward with a stunning performance of his forte – improving older horses – when he got Sea Moon to slam the Melbourne Cup one-two (Dunaden and Red Cadeaux) and demolish the six-wins-in-a-row Aiken.

What now for Sea Moon? The King George? Here am I calling him ‘an older horse’ but he’s just four, and he’s had only eight races in his life. Every chance of yet more improvement from the Stoute one.

JOHN GOSDEN, WILLIAM BUICK: These are all horses names on my list so far, but I make an exception for this partnership: the winners they had are too dazzling to put on paper. Gosden improved his runners by up to 11lb in my reckoning and Buick executed the Gosden Plan to perfection.

JON HAMMOND, DAVID MARNANE: So, while we are at it, let’s give credit to two other trainers: on a rare visit to England these days, Jon Hammond perfectly primed and placed Hammerfest, leading in the final furlong, only for Gosden’s Cambourne to swoop past him.

David Marnane seemed to have had the same near-miss: his Ascot plot, Jamesie (2nd 16-1), just missed out on landing me a Friday jackpot, racing alone down the stands’ rail, but 24 hours later Marnane was the Dandy Boy (won 33-1) in the Wokingham. Brilliant man!

CEILING KITTY, HOYAM: With the low draw doing best, Ceiling Kitty (in 5) bagged the Queen Mary for Tom Dascombe but, despite only one modest-maiden run, Hoyam stepped up, finishing like the proverbial train for Michael Bell from the stands’-side stall 17.

MOST IMPROVED, POWER: We’ll listen to Manton next time. Brian ‘matador’ Meehan was so bullish about Most Improved before the Guineas (withdrawn, slight injury) that we should have lumped on for the St James’ Palace Stakes (at least I had him in my Ten To Follow).

The Ballydoyle flop, Power, is not to be trusted until we know the reason for his in-and-out performances.

PRINCE OF JOHANNE: Defied the stats – that he was too old at six for the Royal Hunt Cup – and defied the handicapper, up 9lb on his Cambridgeshire success. Another fine ride by John Fahy.

SO YOU THINK: Has been ridden wrongly in the past – for stamina – whereas he is now revealed as a speed horse, which wasn’t too difficult to appreciate Aidan (!) since he was fast enough in his younger days to win over 7f (you’re after-timing, Daqman; wasn’t he one of your lays!).

SOLE POWER, WIZZ KID: Drawn on the wrong side (high) in the Kings Stand, with stalls 7, 8, 3, 6 and 10 taking five of the first six places, Sole Power (22) ran a superb race to finish third, while Wizz Kid (lay too far out of his ground, hampered when making forward move) should not be written off after an uninspired ride from stall 15.

BET 7pts win (nap) ROBEMAKER (3.10 Pontefract)
BET 4pts win GLEN’S DIAMOND (3.40 Pontefract)
BET 3.8pts win MY ARCH and 2.7pts win DESCARO (4.10 Pontefract)

* Daqman’s selections are backed to win 20 points so, if you divide 20 by his stake, you know the Betdaq offer taken at the time of writing.

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