Royal Ascot Online Betting
Ascot Racecourse was founded by Queen Anne in 1711. Ascot's first ever race took place on 11th August of the same year. Seven horses competed in "Her Majesty's Plate," with prize money of one hundred guineas. Each horse carried a weight of 12 stones. They were English Hunters, vastly different from the thoroughbreds of today. Perhaps this was just as well, since along with carrying mammoth weights, the race consisted of three heats, each of four miles (not far short of the Grand National distance). Unfortunately, there is no record of the winner. From its creation until 1945, the only racing that took place at Ascot was the Royal Meeting, a four-day event. Since that date, more fixtures have been introduced, notably National Hunt racing in 1965. Ascot currently stages twenty-five days of racing throughout the year. Sixteen days are devoted to flat racing and nine to National Hunt.
Royal Ascot Today
Royal Ascot is the world's most famous race meeting. The Royal family attend the meeting, arriving each day by way of a horse-drawn carriage procession down the centre of the course. Over a quarter of a million people make the visit to Berkshire during Royal Ascot week, making it Europe's best-attended race meeting, even more so than Longchamp's "Arc" meeting in October. It is a major event in the British social calendar, and press coverage of visitors' attire often exceeds coverage of the racing itself. Many of the visitors know nothing about racing, viewing the meeting as merely a social event with the opportunity to consume excessive quantities of champagne. This fact is of great annoyance to some racing fans, who attend the meeting to actually watch excellent quality racing.
Entrance to the Royal Enclosure is subject to a strict dress code. Men are required to wear full morning dress including a top hat, whilst ladies must not show bare midriffs or shoulders and hats are compulsory.
Traditionally, admittance to the Royal Enclosure for the first time was subject to being the guest of an annual Ascot member or sponsorship by a member who had attended at least four times. However, controversially, (and sacrilegiously in the eyes of some) in 2007, Royal Enclosure day passes were issued with hospitality packages.
Until 2006, the Royal meeting at Ascot was spread over four days, the Tuesday to Friday of the third week in June. The racecourse closed in September 2004 and underwent a £185 million refurbishment programme, lasting some twenty months. The Royal meeting was held at York racecourse in 2005. Ascot was reopened by the Queen at the start of the Royal meeting in June 2006. The Ascot Authority saw fit to extend the Royal meeting to include the Saturday, from 2006 onwards. The meeting now consists of thirty races, including sixteen "Pattern" races, with a least one Group 1 contest on each day. Total prize money is in excess of £3 million. The most prestigious race is the Ascot Gold Cup, run on the Thursday and known as Ladies' Day.
Notable Royal Ascot Races
Coventry Stakes, Group 2, 6f, 2-y-o
King's Stand Stakes, Group 1, 5f, 3-y-o+
St. James's Palace Stakes, Group 1, 1 mile, 3-y-o colts
Queen Anne Stakes, Group 1, 1 mile, 4-y-o+
Jersey Stakes, Group 3, 7f, 3-y-o
Windsor Forest Stakes, Group 2, 1 mile, 4-y-o+ fillies & mares
Prince of Wales' Stakes, Group 1, 1m 2f, 4-y-o+
Queen Mary Stakes, Group 2, 5f, 2-y-o fillies
Norfolk Stakes, Group 2, 5f, 2-y-o
Ribblesdale Stakes Group 2, 1m 4f, 3-y-o fillies
Ascot Gold Cup, Group 1, 2m 4f, 4-y-o+
Albany Stakes , Group 3, 6f, 2-y-o fillies
King Edward VII Stakes, Group 2, 1m 4f, 3-y-o colts & geldings
Coronation Stakes, Group 1, 1m, 3-y-o fillies
Queen's Vase, Group 3, 2m, 3-y-o
Chesham Stakes, Listed, 7f, 2-y-o
Hardwicke Stakes, Group 2, 1m 4f, 4-y-o+
Golden Jubilee Stakes, Group 1, 6f, 3-y-o+
Wokingham Stakes, Handicap, 6f, 3-y-o+
Royal Hunt Cup, Handicap, 1m , 3-y-o+
Queen Alexandra Stakes, 2m 5f 159 yards, 4-y-o+ (the longest flat race run in the U.K.)
Betting at Royal Ascot
Nowadays all the major trainers target the meeting and Royal Ascot betting is the highlight of many punters' racing year.
There are many ante-post Royal Ascot betting races and all the odds will be available on online betting sites, either long in advance for the major handicaps or nearer the time for some of the group races.
For many punters, betting centres around the major handicaps (Wokingham Stakes and Royal Hunt Cup).
These contests are "cavalry charges" with huge fields of thirty runners, but this does not deter the majority of players from an online wager. Some bookmakers will be betting each-way 1/4 the odds a place, 1, 2, 3, 4 and 5 so be certain to avail yourself of the best terms.
"Ritz Club" Trophy
This trophy is awarded to the jockey with most winning rides over the five days. Online bookmakers will have prices throughout the meeting. Each-way terms are 1/5 the odds a place 1, 2, 3. In the event of two or more riders having the same number of winners, the number of second, third etc. places are taken into account.
As already stated, for some, Royal Ascot is as much a fashion parade as a race meeting. For the so inclined, it is possible to place an online bet on the colour of the Queen's hat each day. Actually, this is not quite as silly as it sounds, and has proved to be a lucrative proposition over the years. Very often, there is a rush of money in the morning for a particular colour, which often proves to be from shrewd (or well-informed) sources.
Royal Ascot - Further Information
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