Betting Tips and Previews: Horse Racing

QIPCO Ascot Champions Day 2020

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Magical and Stradivarius Head Star Studded Line Up for Ascot QIPCO Champions Day

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The flat racing season of 2020 will be sadly remembered for all the wrong reasons. With only a sprinkling of punters getting to see a race live at the track this season, it is fair to say that Covid 19 has socially obliterated the summer racing calendar.

However, the racing action has been tenaciously relentless despite the restrictions. Some imperious horses have left a tremendous mark on what has been a sorry time for the industry and most of them will be on final display this Saturday as Ascot stages the last hurrah of the flat season.

QIPCO Champions Day is by far the richest day of the entire racing calendar. Offering £2.5 million in prize money, it is the cash bonanza equivalent of two days rewards at The Cheltenham Festival. Six fantastic races are lined up including the feature QIPCO Champions Stakes where a mouth watering clash between Magical and Misriff is on the cards. Talking of cards, here is the line-up for the Champions Day Races:

Champions Day Races

1.20 Qipco British Champions Day Long Distance Cup (Group 2), 2m
1.55 Qipco British Champions Sprint (Group 1), 6f
2.30 Qipco British Champions Fillies & Mares Stakes (Group 1), 1m4f
3.05 Queen Elizabeth II Stakes (Group 1), 1m
3.40 Qipco Champion Stakes (Group 1), 1m2f
4.15 Balmoral Handicap, 1m


Stradivarius (5/6 best with Betfred) has dominated this division for the last couple of years and it would be no surprise to see him land this for a second time.

However, despite the win in 2018, he has been more vulnerable in this race than the Ascot Gold Cup and I think he is worth opposing.

His two main rivals, Search For A Song and Fujaira Prince (8/1 Boylesports) both ran impressively in the Irish St Leger and represent live dangers.

Search For A Song has two great factors in her favour: the 3ib weight allowance and the fact that she has beaten a former champion in the shape of Kew Gardens and therefore gets the vote.

SELECTION: SEARCH FOR A SONG 5/1 win (bet365, Bet Victor, Betfred)


Current favourite Dream Of Dreams (6/4 Betfred) will always get top marks for effort and consistency although the glaring lack of Grade One wins is a major concern.

Better value is to be found with an entry like Art Power who will relish the predicted soft going and looked very impressive in a recent Ascot handicap over 5 furlongs.

Needs to improve a little more to figure but looks excellent each way value at 12/1 (William Hill)

SELECTION: ART POWER 12/1 Each Way (William Hill)


Very difficult race to assess due to the noncommittal status of the Aiden O’Brien star Magical, who is declared for this and The Qipco Champion Stakes.

Magical has been the bridesmaid to recently retired Enable on several occasions and will surely land this if taking part.

5/2 best (bet365, William Hill, Coral, Bet Victor, Betfred) but should be punted on with extreme caution until the announcement is made from Ballydoyle regarding Magical’s final destination.

SELECTION: MAGICAL 5/2 win with bet365


The John Gosden favourite Palace Pier (4/5 William Hill) has been in devastating form this season and looks very hard to oppose in this renewal of the QIPCO Queen Elizabeth II Stakes.

He will appreciate the heavy going and represents the nap of the day. Kameko can figure if he can muster his 2000 Guineas winning form but will need to improve again in order to get near Palace Pier.



John Gosden also saddles the favourite in this feature race of the day although the form here for Misriff (5/2 Bet 365, William Hill, Betfred) is not quite as bombproof as Palace Pier.

Those thinking of punting on Misriff should certainly consider the 5/2 available as he is likely to go near odds on if Magical lines up in the Fillies & Mares race instead.

However, if connections of Magical (9/4 Bet Victor) opt for this more lucrative prize, Misriff will be up against it considering the 3ib allowance Magical will receive.

A race probably best watched and savoured although an each way at 8/1 (William Hill) on Lord North who has been consistent all season might be a shrewd option.

SELECTION: LORD NORTH 8/1 Each Way (William Hill)


The final race of the day is the traditional handicap which is extremely competitive as always. 20 runners will go to post and at this early stage, Betfair and Paddy Power are offering 5 places on ante post bets although the place offers should improve with other firms nearer to the off.

I like the look of Njord (12/1 William Hill, Betfred) who has been niggled at in the market this week. He’s been consistent over in Ireland and wouldn’t need to improve much to make the frame here.

SELECTION: NJORD 12/1 Each Way (William Hill, Betfred)


13.20 Qipco British Champions Day Long Distance Cup (Group 2), 2m
SELECTION: SEARCH FOR A SONG 5/1 win (Bet 365, Bet Victor, Betfred)

13.55 Qipco British Champions Sprint (Group 1), 6f
SELECTION: ART POWER 12/1 Each Way (William Hill)

14.30 Qipco British Champions Fillies & Mares Stakes (Group 1), 1m4f
SELECTION: MAGICAL 5/2 win (bet365)

15.05 Queen Elizabeth II Stakes (Group 1), 1m

15.40 Qipco Champion Stakes (Group 1), 1m2f
SELECTION: LORD NORTH 8/1 Each Way (William Hill)

16.15 Balmoral Handicap, 1m
SELECTION: NJORD 12/1 Each Way (William Hill, Betfred)

Please note all odds are correct at the time of publishing (4pm 13th October 2020) and are subject to change.


Matt is Howtobet4free's resident Horse Racing expert, writer, tipster and a huge Cheltenham Festival fan. He occasionally dabbles in Golf, Football and anything else you can gamble on!

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