The statement “one rule for one and another for others” is one that is deemed to exist in many environments and it may now too be true in the betting for the St James’ Palace Stakes.
Dawn Approach is largely certain to go off favourite at 5/4, despite finishing stone last in the Epsom Derby, where he refused to settle in the early stages and blew his chance of victory before half-way.
Now back over his 2000 Guineas-winning distance of 1m, rather than the extended 1m4f of the Derby, Dawn Approach is fancied to bounce back to former glories and is being given a second chance by many punters.
However, the same second chance is not really being given to Toronado, based on the Royal Ascot betting.
Toronado locked horns for 7f with Dawn Approach in the 2,000 Guineas before fading late on.
Reasons including a mouth problem and a failure to fully recover from a tough win in the Craven Stakes only a fortnight previous were both given for the performance, with trainer Richard Hannon still holding him in the highest regard.
Toronado is 7/2 to win the St James’ Palace Stakes and if back to his best, he does not have much to find with the leading principals.
Aside from Dawn Approach, the 1m contest is predominantly being billed as a direct showdown with Irish 2000 Guineas winner Magician (2/1).
Six of the last 10 St James’ Palace Stakes winners had run in the Irish 2000 Guineas on their most recent start, while three of the last four horses to attempt the double were successful.
The worry is that Magician may not have beaten much in the way of Group 1 milers and so his form may need to be taken with a pinch of salt.
Of the remainder, Mars looked to be staying on well in the Derby after struggling for a clear path to the front and could make the places this time. He heads the each-way interest at 10/1.
All Odds and Markets are correct as of the date of publishing.