Asfoora draws well in the King Charles III Stakes field

Australian mare to start closest to the outside fence at Royal Ascot.

Henry Dwyer believes Asfoora has been given the chance to run as well as possible in the King Charles III Stakes on opening day at Royal Ascot after the barrier draw for the Group 1 sprint.

The Australian mare will start closest to the outside fence after landing barrier 17 in the 1006-metre sprint.

The Ballarat horseman maintains that Breeders Cup Juvenile Turf winner Big Evs (barrier six) is the horse to beat but he was delighted to draw close to Regional (15), who is one of the expected early speed influences in the race.

“The horse to beat is clearly Big Evs, it’s drawn closer to the rail side, and people keep telling me when it’s firm at Royal Ascot you want to be more the stand side, which we are, which is good,” Dwyer said.

“With any straight race I suppose, whether it’s Royal Ascot or Flemington, you want to be somewhere near the other chances in the race.

“We’re in 17 and Regional, who is second favourite, is 15 and it’s one of the speed horses in the race.

“So, I think it sets up for us to just sit off Regional, be in the right part of the track and run as well as we can.”

Asfoora, who will be ridden by Oisin Murphy, tightened slightly after the barrier draw and is now a $6.50 chance with betting apps behind Regional ($5.50) and Big Evs ($4.60).

The five-year-old daughter of Flying Artie is chasing a maiden Group 1 win in the King Charles III Stakes, a race that has been won by Australian stars Choisir, Takeover Target, Miss Andretti, Scenic Blast and Nature Strip.

Dwyer concedes she is not in the class of that quintet, but he is also aware she may not need to be.

“Everyone keeps telling me Asfoora’s not good enough, but they’re not comparing her to the opposition, they’re comparing her to other (Australian) horses that have gone over,” he said.

“We only can beat what’s put in front of us and everyone keeps telling me that the European five-furlong horses this year lack depth and that’s probably proven by the fact there’s been four lead-up races and they’ve all been bunched finishes and they’ve all been won by an outsider.

“They’re all equally good or they’re all equally lacking in depth.

“Big Evs is a really nice horse and he’s the testing material, but everything else in the race they’re taking it in turns.”

The King Charles III Stakes is the third race on the opening day at Royal Ascot and will be run at 12.45am Wednesday AEST.

About RS NewsWire

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