Sacred Kingdom hopes to shake off jet lag

Once again, it looks as though the British can be relied upon to step hospitably aside when two more foreign speedballs show up at Ascot this afternoon.

Indeed, the hosts' principal interest in the Golden Jubilee Stakes is to discover exactly what kind of international showdown will next be staged on their soil, in the Darley July Cup at Newmarket next month. For either J J The Jet Plane, from South Africa, or Sacred Kingdom, from Hong Kong, must come up with something pretty special to promise credible opposition to Scenic Blast, such a brilliant winner for Australia here on Tuesday.

J J The Jet Plane, winner of three Group One prizes in his homeland, made an auspicious reconnaissance when dominating a small field down the road at Windsor earlier in the month. Of course, the whole point of the Global Sprint Challenge is to weave together disparate international formlines. For the moment, it seems fair to favour the orient express, Sacred Kingdom, on the basis that he has beaten more diverse opposition.

In cutting down the local champion, Rocket Man, he opened up a big gap in Singapore last month to Diabolical – who had been beaten only narrowly by King's Apostle, much the most interesting of the home team today, over this course and distance last September. That performance showed that Sacred Kingdom had retrieved the terrifying speed he was showing before an injury last year, notably in destroying his rivals at the Hong Kong international carnival in 2007. His victims that day included Marchand d'Or, who carried all before him on his return to Europe the following season. The one caveat is that Sacred Kingdom has made an exacting journey far more recently than did J J The Jet Plane his own.

Sadly Takeover Target, the veteran Australian raider who finished down the field in Singapore, must wait for the July Cup for another crack at the winner after dropping out with a temperature yesterday. The home cause has meanwhile enlisted one recent immigrant in Ialysos, who apparently did some fairly extraordinary things in Greece and made a solid start for Luca Cumani at Haydock last month. The extra furlong will suit, but a peak performance from Sacred Kingdom (3.45) would set up an epic match with Scenic Blast.

The only other Group race on the card is the Hardwicke Stakes. Dr Fremantle is the class act after finishing fourth in the Derby last year, but he will always be vulnerable over this distance until learning to settle better. Though better known as an all-weather performer, Dansant (3.05) has done well from limited opportunities on turf, and will be primed and fresh for this.

The two leading fancies for the Wokingham Handicap have been drawn on opposite sides of the track, and events this week imply that Jimmy Styles (4.25) may have fared best. Regardless, as a lightly raced sprinter making rapid improvement, he could conceivably be back here next year in the Golden Jubilee itself.

The other handicap on the card, the Duke of Edinburgh Stakes, can also go to a well-drawn, lightly-raced type who travels like one who will prove better than his present rating. Having gone clear impressively, Crackentorp (5.00) either idled or tired on his reappearance at Goodwood.

The card opens with a race for the Chesham Stakes so competitive that it is difficult to choose even between the two Ballydoyle colts. Beethoven (2.30) is preferred, having got much closer of the pair to a useful type named Love Lockdown in races at home. Those still needing a winner in the last may find the longest race in the calendar tough going, but it is probably Amerigo (5.35) who retains most scope for further progress.

Chris McGrath

Nap: Strictly (3.50 Newmarket)

NB: Crackentorp (5.0 Ascot)

Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
The Tesco Hudl2: An exceptional Android tablet that's powerful, well-built and outstanding value

Life and Style
food + drinkAuthor DBC Pierre presents his guide to the morning after
Two christmas trees ,Moonbeam (2L), Moonchester (2R) and Santa Claus outside the Etihad Stadium
footballAll the action from today's games
Sarah Silverman (middle) with sister Reform Rabbi Susan Silverman (right) and sister actress Laura Silverman (left) at Jerusalem's Western Wall for feminist Hanuka candle-lighting ceremony
peopleControversial comedian stages pro-equality Hanukkah lighting during a protest at Jerusalem's Wailing Wall
Arts and Entertainment
The Bach Choir has been crowned the inaugural winner of Sky Arts’ show The Great Culture Quiz
arts + ents140-year-old choir declared winner of Sky Arts' 'The Great Culture Quiz'
Life and Style
food + drink
Caption competition
Caption competition
Latest stories from i100
Daily Quiz
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Independent Dating

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

Career Services
iJobs Job Widget
iJobs General

Recruitment Genius: Finance Director

£65000 - £80000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: Finance Director required to jo...

Recruitment Genius: Medico-Legal Assistant

£15000 - £25000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: This is a unique opportunity fo...

Ashdown Group: (PHP / Python) - Global Media firm

£50000 per annum + 26 days holiday,pension: Ashdown Group: A highly successful...

The Jenrick Group: Quality Inspector

£27000 per annum + pension + holidays: The Jenrick Group: A Quality Technician...

Day In a Page

Homeless Veterans appeal: 'You look for someone who's an inspiration and try to be like them'

Homeless Veterans appeal

In 2010, Sgt Gary Jamieson stepped on an IED in Afghanistan and lost his legs and an arm. He reveals what, and who, helped him to make a remarkable recovery
Could cannabis oil reverse the effects of cancer?

Could cannabis oil reverse effects of cancer?

As a film following six patients receiving the controversial treatment is released, Kate Hilpern uncovers a very slippery issue
The Interview movie review: You can't see Seth Rogen and James Franco's Kim Jong Un assassination film, but you can read about it here

The Interview movie review

You can't see Seth Rogen and James Franco's Kim Jong Un assassination film, but you can read about it here
Serial mania has propelled podcasts into the cultural mainstream

How podcasts became mainstream

People have consumed gripping armchair investigation Serial with a relish typically reserved for box-set binges
Jesus Christ has become an unlikely pin-up for hipster marketing companies

Jesus Christ has become an unlikely pin-up

Kevin Lee Light, aka "Jesus", is the newest client of creative agency Mother while rival agency Anomaly has launched Sexy Jesus, depicting the Messiah in a series of Athena-style poses
Rosetta space mission voted most important scientific breakthrough of 2014

A memorable year for science – if not for mice

The most important scientific breakthroughs of 2014
Christmas cocktails to make you merry: From eggnog to Brown Betty and Rum Bumpo

Christmas cocktails to make you merry

Mulled wine is an essential seasonal treat. But now drinkers are rediscovering other traditional festive tipples. Angela Clutton raises a glass to Christmas cocktails
5 best activity trackers

Fitness technology: 5 best activity trackers

Up the ante in your regimen and change the habits of a lifetime with this wearable tech
Paul Scholes column: It's a little-known fact, but I have played one of the seven dwarves

Paul Scholes column

It's a little-known fact, but I have played one of the seven dwarves
Fifa's travelling circus once again steals limelight from real stars

Fifa's travelling circus once again steals limelight from real stars

Club World Cup kicked into the long grass by the continued farce surrounding Blatter, Garcia, Russia and Qatar
Frank Warren column: 2014 – boxing is back and winning new fans

Frank Warren: Boxing is back and winning new fans

2014 proves it's now one of sport's biggest hitters again
Jeb Bush vs Hillary Clinton: The power dynamics of the two first families

Jeb Bush vs Hillary Clinton

Karen Tumulty explores the power dynamics of the two first families
Stockholm is rivalling Silicon Valley with a hotbed of technology start-ups

Stockholm is rivalling Silicon Valley

The Swedish capital is home to two of the most popular video games in the world, as well as thousands of technology start-ups worth hundreds of millions of pounds – and it's all happened since 2009
Did Japanese workers really get their symbols mixed up and display Santa on a crucifix?

Crucified Santa: Urban myth refuses to die

The story goes that Japanese store workers created a life-size effigy of a smiling "Father Kurisumasu" attached to a facsimile of Our Lord's final instrument of torture
Jennifer Saunders and Kate Moss join David Walliams on set for TV adaptation of The Boy in the Dress

The Boy in the Dress: On set with the stars

Walliams' story about a boy who goes to school in a dress will be shown this Christmas