By Michael Volton / June 15, 2020
2020’s edition of Royal Ascot has now finally arrived and welcomes the return of UK horse racing. This is a positive step for the sport, despite this year having a completely different feel. The event will be held behind closed doors, which means no spectators will be in attendance and that also includes the Queen, who has been to every meeting since back in 1946.
There is expected to be record breaking numbers watching the Royal meeting from their own homes and it will again be one of the most important five days in the racing calendar for punters. As a result of market saturation, sports betting sites not on gamstop in particular will be looking to incentivise new punters with some of the best welcome bonuses and loyalty reward schemes in order to enhance their market share.
What is Royal Ascot?
Royal Ascot is a popular betting event for punters who have self-excluded on the gamstop scheme. Given the prevalent nature of the meeting, it is widely regarded as one of the most popular betting events in the horse racing calendar – following the Cheltenham Festival and Grand National – the jumps season’s showpiece events.
The feature race across the five days is the Gold Cup, which is one of eight Group One races and was first run back in 1807. Estimate was a winner for the Queen back in 2013, which turned out to be a very memorable occasion. The race is ran over 2m4f and is set for a 3.35pm start on Thursday afternoon. The John Gosden trained Stradivarius heads into the race as the overwhelming favourite, as he goes in search of a third victory in succession in this race.
What do I need to know about Royal Ascot?
The opening day of 2020 meeting includes two Group one races, the Queen Anne stakes, and the King’s Stand stakes. The latter will see the return of Battaash who on his day is one of the best sprinters we have seen for a long time. He will be aiming to win the race for the first time and is also set to go off as one of the shortest priced favourites across the five days. Battaash finished runner-up in the race in 2019, when the now retired Blue Point ran out an impressive winner.
Aiden O’Brien is always a trainer to follow at the meeting and will again start as the overwhelming favourite to finish the week at the top of the trainer’s table. He has 70 winners to date, which means he is now just 11 behind the all-time leader Sir Michael Stoute, for Royal Ascot winners.
Ryan Moore will start as the favourite to finish top of the jockey table. He has had 57 winners to date, that includes a record breaking nine in 2015 alone. This puts him 12 behind Frankie Dettori, who will also be expected to challenge for the jockey title.
There continues to be an international feel to Royal Ascot and Wesley Ward will again be sending a select team over to the meeting. He has had 10 winners to date, with his first coming back in 2009.
Some of the best non UK betting sites are available for Gamstop punters to place their bets, with the welcome bonuses likely to ensure a memorable week for both spectators and bettors alike.