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Nature Strip set to skip Platinum Jubilee after King's Stand romp

15 Jun 2022
Jon Vine 15 Jun 2022
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  • Nature Strip ran out a hugely impressive winner of the King's Stand Stakes on day one
  • Chris Waller's star holds an entry in Saturday's Platinum Jubilee Stakes
  • Connection confirmed today that Nature Strip will pass up that entry to target The Everest
nature strip
James McDonald riding Nature Strip win The King's Stand Stakes during Royal Ascot 2022. (Getty)

The most impressive winner on day one of Royal Ascot was undoubtedly Chris Waller's star sprinter, Nature Strip.

With James McDonald in the saddle, Nature Strip produced a superb display to win the King's Stand Stakes, powering five lengths clear of Twilight Calls and Acklam Express to hand Waller an overdue Royal Ascot success.

Waller had entered Nature Strip in both the King's Stand and the Platinum Jubilee Stakes prior to Royal Ascot. Following Nature Strip's stunning victory on Tuesday, many speculated that Australia's star sprinter may attempt that famous Ascot double, a feat last achieved by Blue Point in 2019.

In the immediate aftermath of the King's Stand, connections refused to say whether Nature Strip would be seen again during Royal Ascot 2022. Today, Nature Strip's managing owner, Rod Lyons spoke to the press again and confirmed an attempt at that double was off the table. 

"No (he won't run on Saturday)" Lyons said. "I think there was a fair bit of pressure on the boss to get him to run, but he said he's done his job, let's get him quarantined, get him home and get him ready for The Everest."

Waller and McDonald could still taste Platinum Jubilee Stakes success, as Home Affairs - who beat stablemate Nature Strip in the Black Caviar Lightning in February - currently tops the betting for that Group One. Home Affairs will square off against Wesley Ward's two-time Royal Ascot winner Campenelle, British Champion Sprinter Creative Force, and another Aussie raider in the form of Anthony and Sam Freedman's three-year-old, Artorius.

Meanwhile, Tote reported that turnover on day one of Royal Ascot saw £31,600,000 bet into the pool, up from £27.1M last year, which means they are also on track to break the 5-day record. 

Yesterday saw a huge over-pay (28/1 on the Tote compared to 20/1 SP) on Dubai Future in the Wolferton Stakes, leading one shrewd punter to scoop £100,000. 

Racing Director, Jamie Hart told RacingInsider.com: “The King’s Stand was a whisker off beating the Derby as being the biggest win pool ever and I am confident that record will fall this week. What is hugely encouraging are the stats on the exotics, particularly the Swinger and Quinella, which UK punters are clearly getting stuck into as they cotton on to the value available to them.” 

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