Belfast Telegraph

Thursday 24 July 2014

Bookies bounce off the ropes and enjoy a great day

Andrea Atzeni won opener on Cursory Glance

Bookmakers finally clawed back some of the losses from what had a been a punter-friendly Royal Ascot as the six races on day four of the showpiece meeting failed to produce a single winning favourite.

For the first time in the week, the opening race was a positive result for the bookmakers as 14-1 chance Cursory Glance swooped late to deny American challenger Sunset Glow and 9-2 joint-favourite Patience Alexander.

And the momentum stayed with the layers in the Wolferton Stakes, with 2-1 favourite Bold Sniper, owned by the Queen, gunned down late on by Contributer (9-1) in the Wolferton Handicap.

It was then the turn of the relatively unconsidered Eagle Top to swoop at 12-1 in the King Edward VII Stakes, accounting for 6-5 favourite Adelaide in impressive fashion.

Rizeena was generally accepted as being the best juvenile filly around last season, but a reverse in the 1,000 Guineas saw her returned at 11-2 in the Coronation Stakes in what was another good one for the bookmakers as market leader Lightning Thunder and the well-touted My Titania did not make the first three.

Another favourite was sunk as Marzocco had to settle for third in the Queen's Vase and Louis The Pious completed the punting misery with his 33-1 shock in the concluding Buckingham Palace Handicap.

Joseph Burke of RaceBets said: "Today was the day that the bookmakers fought back.

"Having been on the ropes after the first three days, the layers took an early lead in round four with two quick jabs (Patience Alexander and Bold Sniper) followed by an uppercut courtesy of the defeat of Adelaide in the King Edward VII Stakes.

"We were surprised with the money that came for Lightning Thunder and she became the fourth consecutive favourite to be beaten, only beating two home.

"Marzocco's third place finish was a further clear connect to punters chins on a day where the bookmakers were heading for a unanimous decision before a win for Louis The Pious delivered the final knockout blow."

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