King's Stand Stakes
Group 1, Ascot 15:40
£500,000 guaranteed,
3yo plus,
5f, Class 1   
Tuesday 14th June 2022


1 Nature Strip 9/4
2 Twilight Calls 11/1
3 Acklam Express 200/1
16 ran NR: Khaadem, Mondammej
Distances: 4½l, hd, ½l Time: 58.25s (fast by 1.15s)

Australian star Nature Strip lit up the opening day of Royal Ascot by running out a stunning four-and-a-half-length winner of the G1 King’s Stand Stakes.
It was a King’s Stand Stakes that had a major international flavour to it, with Nature Strip dominating the betting alongside Golden Pal – but the US raider blew the start and Nature Strip had the five-furlong showpiece under control from a long way out.
An eight-time G1 winner in his homeland, Nature Strip was always front rank under James McDonald and it was clear two furlongs out that the home challengers were struggling to get to grips with Chris Waller’s top-class sprinter.
The eight-year-old saw his race out strongly to come home clear of runner-up Twilight Calls, with 200/1 chance Acklam Express back in third for trainer Nigel Tinkler.
Nature Strip may now try and follow in the footsteps of fellow Australian sprinter Choisir and Blue Point by completing the big Royal Ascot sprint double in Saturday’s G1 Platinum Jubilee Stakes.
It was a second Royal Ascot winner for McDonald, who partnered Expert Eye to victory in the 2018 Jersey Stakes, and a first for trainer Waller, who is best known for training the mighty Winx.
Waller said: "It means a lot. We don't get the opportunity very often to come here and take on the English, Irish, French, Americans and even Dubai and Hong Kong runners.
“To therefore bring a horse here and not only run, but win, is very special. It was breathtaking - Nature Strip is a very good horse and has been for a very long time. I guess he is in the twilight of his career, but he has learned to be a racehorse.
“Nature Strip was tricky early on in his career, but he has got better with age and it is an honour to train a horse like him.
“Australia has a huge racing and breeding industry. To showcase our breeds and what we do is important. Ratings stack up and he is one of the highest-rated horses in the world, but until you do it on the main stage it's another story. It will just remind everybody about how strong we are in Australia.
"It’s six and a half Australian victories at Royal Ascot as James McDonald and I are New Zealanders of course. Six and a half to Australia and a half to New Zealand. 

“Nature Strip still has jobs to do in Australia, but we'll see how he comes through this race and no decision [as to whether he runs in Saturday's Platinum Jubilee] will be made today. This is the top five in my career. Any win is great. We work with some amazing people who have been very good to us.”

Trainers Quotes

McDonald said: “That was incredible. The team have done a marvellous job. I'm so lucky to be on Nature Strip. He is just a freak of a horse and has silenced a few critics with that performance, because it was scintillating.
“We had a bit of a scare when I thought one was coming for me and it had no rider on [Khaadem] - I thought that was a bit unfair! The way Nature Strip quickened up, the way he executed his gallop, was scintillating. It was an unbelievable feel coming up the rise; he was just idling along and, like I said, I didn’t think a horse could come with him, so when the horse appeared without the rider, I did get a bit of a fright.
“I saw Golden Pal charge through and at the two-furlong pole, I thought are you going to come, and he had no response. Away he went and that riderless horse gave me a little fright to be honest with you.
“I said to Katelyn [partner] on the plane over, ‘I’ve had an unbelievable year and this would be the icing on the cake’. It’s a dream come true to come here with such good horses, and for him to travel like he had, and Chris prepping him like he had, I don’t think he’s ever been better. He was in unbelievable form before he left.
“It was one of my greatest highlights winning at Royal Ascot on Expert Eye. To come back and win a Group 1 in front of this crowd - it's unbelievable, it is the best feeling.”
Twilight Calls’ trainer Henry Candy said: “I am absolutely delighted, what can you say about the winner? How many races has he won? How many millions has he won?! So it is no shame to finish second, and I thought Twilight Calls ran an absolute cracker.
"Ryan said there was a slightly messy start, and lost a length which did not help, but it did not make a difference. He might have been a better second, that's all.
"I would imagine we will go to York and somewhere they go very quick! He loves this fast ground."
Nigel Tinkler said of Acklam Express: “The winner is very, very good. We thought we'd finish in the first half, although we did not expect to be as close as that. I am delighted. He is just a lovely, lovely horse.
"York and Goodwood are the targets. He shows a lot of pace and is very quick. He was just a bit too prominent today - we thought we'd come from behind. He would have liked to have been further back early on, but he really travelled. It was brilliant. The owners backed him to finish in the first half at 40/1!
"He has been to Dubai before, and the Breeders' Cup is high on the agenda, and we can't wait to travel again.”


King's Stand Stakes (Group 1)
£500,000 guaranteed, 3yo plus, 5f, Class 1
16 ran
Going: Good to Firm, Good in places

1 (10)     Nature Strip 7 9-7 Chris Waller James McDonald 9/4
2 (6)
Twilight Calls 4 9-7 Henry Candy Ryan Moore 11/1
3 (11)
hd Acklam Express 4 9-7 Nigel Tinkler Rowan Scott 200/1
4 (14)
½ Mooneista 4 9-4 Jack W Davison Colin Keane 16/1
5 (8)
nk Equilateral 7 9-7 Charles Hills Kieran Shoemark 66/1
6 (16)
½ Saint Lawrence 4 9-7 Roger Varian Andrea Atzeni 100/1
7 (2)
¾ King's Lynn 5 9-7 Andrew Balding David Probert 14/1
8 (5)
hd Man Of Promise 5 9-7 Charlie Appleby William Buick 8/1
9 (15)
nk Lazuli 5 9-7 Charlie Appleby James Doyle 16/1
10 (7)
Tis Marvellous 8 9-7 Clive Cox Adam Kirby 50/1
11 (18)
shd Existent 4 9-7 Stuart Williams Marco Ghiani 66/1
12 (3)
hd Arecibo 7 9-7 Robert Cowell Rossa Ryan 80/1
13 (12)
Ponntos 4 9-7 Miroslav Nieslanik Tomas Lukasek 50/1
14 (1)
nk Winter Power 4 9-4 Tim Easterby David Allan 33/1
15 (17)
Logo Hunter 4 9-7 Michael J Browne Seamie Heffernan 50/1
16 (13)
6 Golden Pal 4 9-7 Wesley A Ward Irad Ortiz Jr 15/8F
NR (4) Khaadem 6 9-7 Charles Hills NON RUNNER
NR (9) Mondammej 5 9-7 Antony Brittain NON RUNNER


Past Results

2021-WINNER-OXTED Roger Teal Cieren Fallon S Piper,T Hirschfeld,D Fish & J Collins 5 9-05 4/1

2020-WINNER-BATTAASH Charlie Hills Jim Crowley Hamdan Al Maktoum 6-9-04 5/6F

2019-WINNER-BLUE POINT Charlie Appleby James Doyle Godolphin 5-9-04 5/2

2018-WINNER-BLUE POINT Charlie Appleby William Buick Godolphin 4-9-04 6/1

2017-WINNER-LADY AURELIA 3-8-09 Owner-Stonestreet Stables, George Bolton, Peter Leidel; Trainer-Wesley Ward USA; Jockey- John Velazquez; SP-7/2
2ND-Profitable 5-9-04 Owner-Godolphin; Trainer-Clive Cox; Jockey-James Doyle; SP-14/1
3RD-Marsha 4-9-01 Owner-Elite Racing Club; Trainer-Sir Mark Prescott; Jockey-Luke Morris; 11/4F
17 ran; Time-57.45s; Dist-3, hd

2016-WINNER-PROFITABLE 4-9-04 Owner-Alan Spence; Trainer-Clive Cox; Jockey-Adam Kirby; SP-4/1
2ND-Cotai Glory 4-9-04 Owner-Kangyu Int Racing (HK) Ltd & F Ma; Trainer-Charlie Hills; Jockey-George Baker-SP-33/1
3RD-Goken 4-9-04 Owner-Guy Pariente; Trainer-Kevin Ryan; Jockey-Jamie Spencer; SP-50/1
17 ran; Time-1m 2.69s; Dist-nk, 1 6/4 Fav Mecca’s Angel (16th)

2015-WINNER-GOLDREAM 6-9-04 Owner-J Sargeant & Mrs J Morley; Trainer-Robert Cowell; Jockey-Martin Harley; SP-20/1
2ND-Medicean Man 9-9-04 Owner-Stuart & Kate Dobb; Trainer-Jeremy Gask; Jockey-Joao Moreira; SP-50/1
3RD-Muthmir 5-9-04 Owner-Hamdan Al Maktoum; Trainer-William Haggas; Jockey-Paul Hanagan; SP-3/1
18 ran; Time-59.11s; Dist-sh, nk 5/2 Fav Sole Power (5th)

2014-WINNER- SOLE POWER 7-9-04 Owner-Sabena Power; Trainer-Edward Lynam IRE; Jockey-Richard Hughes; SP-5/1
2ND-Stepper Point 5-9-04 Owner-Clive Edginton; Trainer-William Muir; Jockey-Martin Dwyer; SP-50/1
3RD-Hot Streak 3-8-12 Owner-Qatar Racing Limited; Trainer-Kevin Ryan; Jockey-Jamie Spencer; SP-3/1 Fav
16 ran; Time-58.85s; Dist-11⁄4, nk

2013-WINNER- SOLE POWER 6-9-04 Owner-Sabena Power; Trainer-Edward Lynam IRE; Jockey-Johnny Murtagh: SP-8/1
2ND-Shea Shea 6-9-04 Owner-Bryan Joffe & Myron Berzack; Trainer-Mike De Kock SAF; Jockey-Christophe Soumillon; SP-11/4 Fav
3RD-Pearl Secret 4-9-04 Owner-Qatar Racing Limited; Trainer-David Barron; Jockey-Jamie Spencer; SP-10/1
19 ran; Time-58.88s; Dist-nk, 1¼

2012-WINNER- LITTLE BRIDGE 6-9-04 Owner-Ko Kam Piu; Trainer-Danny Shum HK; Jockey-Zac Purton; SP-12/1
2RD-Bated Breath 5-9-04 Owner-Khalid Abdullah; Trainer-Roger Charlton; Jockey-James Doyle; SP-11/2
3RD-Sole Power 5-9-04 Owner-Sabena Power; Trainer-Eddie Lynam IRE; Jockey-Johnny Murtagh; SP-8/1
22 ran; Time: 59.29s; Dist ¾, 1 9/2 Jt Favs Ortensia (9th), Wizz Kid (10th)

2011-WINNER- PROHIBIT 6-9-04 Owner-Dasmal, Rix, Barr, Morley, Mrs Penny; Trainer-Robert Cowell; Jockey-Jim Crowley;
2RD-Star Witness 4-9-04 Owner-Widden Stud; Trainer-Danny O’Brien AUS; Jockey-Steven Arnold; SP-6/1
3RD-Sweet Sanette 6-9-01 Owner-Chow Hong & Wu Po Kung; Trainer-Tony Millard HK; Jockey-Jamie Spencer; SP-16/1
19 ran; Time: 59.50s; Dist ½, ½ 11/2 Fav Kingsgate Native (6th)

2010-WINNER-EQUIANO 5-9-04 Owner-James Acheson; Trainer-Barry Hills; Jockey-Michael Hills; SP-9/2
2ND-Markab 7-9-04 Owner-Tight Lines Partnership; Trainer-Henry Candy; Jockey-Pat Cosgrave; SP-14/1
3RD-Borderlescott 8-9-04 Owner-James Edgar & William Donaldson; Trainer-Robin Bastiman; Jockey-Neil Callan; SP-16/1
12 ran; Time: 59.00s; Dist: 1½, nk 5/2 Fav Kingsgate Native (6th)

2009-WINNER-SCENIC BLAST 5-9-04 Owner-Elio Anthony Galante & Partners; Trainer-Danny Morton AUS; Jockey-Steven
Arnold; SP 11/4 Fav
2ND-Fleeting Spirit 4-9-01 Owner-The Searchers; Trainer Jeremy Noseda; Jockey-Ryan Moore; SP-7/2
3RD-Anglezarke 3-8-09 Owner-David Armstrong; Trainer-David Easterby; Jockey-David Allen; SP-33/1
15 ran; Time: 59.54; Dist: ¾, 2¾

2008-WINNER-EQUIANO 3-8-12 Owner-James Acheson; Trainer-Mauricio Delcher Sanchez ESP; Jockey-Olivier Peslier;
SP 22/1
2ND-Takeover Target 9-9-04 Owner-Joe & Ben Janiak; Trainer-Joe Janiak AUS; Jockey-Jay Ford; SP-6/1
3RD-Fleeting Spirit 3-8-09 Owner-The Searchers; Trainer-Jeremy Noseda; Jockey-Ryan Moore; SP-15/8 Fav
13 ran, Time-59.35s, Dist: ½, nk

2007-WINNER-MISS ANDRETTI 6-9-01 Owner-Sean Buckley, Dave Mueller, Gabriella Guenzi; Trainer-Lee Freedman AUS;
Jockey-Craig Newitt; SP-3/1 Fav
2ND-Dandy Man 4-9-04 Owner-H R H Princess Haya Of Jordan; Trainer-Tracey Collins IRE; Jockey-Pat Shanahan; SP-15/2
3RD-Magnus 5-9-04 Owner-Robert Crabtree; Trainer-Peter Moody AUS; Jockey-Damien Oliver; SP-14/1
20 ran, Time-57.44s, Dist: 1¾, nk

2006-WINNER-TAKEOVER TARGET 7-9-07 Owner-Joe & Ben Janiak; Trainer-Joe Janiak AUS; Jockey-Jay Ford; SP-7/1
2ND-Benbaun 5-9-02 Owner-Ransley, Birks, Hillen; Trainer-Mark Wallace; Jockey-Jamie Spencer; SP-16/1
3RD-Pivotal Point 6-9-02 Owner-R A Bernard; Trainer-Peter Makin; Jockey-Frankie Dettori; SP-25/1
28 ran, Time-59.79s, Dist: sh, ½ 5/1 Fav Moss Vale (8th)

2005-WINNER-CHINEUR 4-9-02 Owner-Marquesa De Moratalla; Trainer-Mikel Delzangles FR; Jockey-Christophe Lemaire;
2ND-Boogie Street 4-9-02 Owner-Hippodrome Racing; Trainer-Richard Hannon; Jockey-Richard Hughes; SP-16/1
3RD-Moss Vale 4-9-02 Owner-John C Grant & Cheveley Park Stud; Trainer-Barry Hills; Jockey-Michael Hills; SP-14/1
16 ran, Time-57-55s, Dist: 1¾, nk 11/2 Jt-Favs Var (6th) and The Tatling (7th) (run at York)

2004-WINNER-THE TATLING 7-9-02 Owner-Dab Hand Racing; Trainer-Milton Bradley; Jockey-Darryll Holland; SP-8/1
2ND-Cape Of Good Hope 6-9-02 Owner-Exors of the late R Carstairs; Trainer-David Oughton HK; Jockey-Michael Kinane;
3RD-Frizzante 5-8-13 Owner-Jan Hopper & Elizabeth Grundy; Trainer-James Fanshawe; Jockey-Johnny Murtagh; SP-9/2
19 ran, Time-1m 0.16s, Dist: 1½, nk

2003-WINNER-CHOISIR 4-9-07 Owner-Terry Wallace & Partners; Trainer-Paul Perry AUS; Jockey-Johnny Murtagh;
2ND-Acclamation 4-9-02 Owner-Dulford Cavaliers; Trainer-Gerald Cottrell; Jockey-Pat Eddery; SP-16/1
3RD-Oasis Dream 3-9-01 Owner-Khalid Abdullah; Trainer-John Gosden; Jockey-Richard Hughes; SP-6/1 Fav
20 ran, Time-59.68s, Dist: 1, 1½

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