King George VI & Queen Elizabeth Stakes sponsored by QIPCO
Group 1, Ascot 15:35
£1,150,000 added, 3yo plus,
1m 3f 211y, Class 1   
Saturday 29th July 2017

Highland Reel (Aidan O'Brien IRE) heads the 16 five-day confirmations for the £1,150,000 G1 King George VI & Queen Elizabeth Stakes (Sponsored by QIPCO), Britain's premier all-aged middle-distance contest which takes place over a mile and a half at Ascot on Saturday, July 29. 
 
Highland Reel
© Racehorse Photos
Highland Reel
 
Successful by a length and a quarter in the 2016 renewal, Highland Reel is bidding to become only the third dual winner of the King George VI & Queen Elizabeth Stakes (Sponsored by QIPCO) following Dahlia (1973 & 1974) and Swain (1997 & 1998). 
 
A six-time G1 winner across three continents, Highland Reel was last seen out when successful in the 10-furlong G1 Prince of Wales's Stakes at Royal Ascot on June 21.
 
Ireland's champion Flat trainer Aidan O'Brien, seeking a fifth win in the Ascot highlight, has also left in Highland Reel's full-bother Idaho, victorious over the course and distance last time out in the G2 Hardwicke Stakes on June 24, recent G3 International Stakes scorer Johannes Vermeer and US Army Ranger, the 2016 Investec Derby runner-up.
 
Pawneese (1976) and Taghrooda (2014) are the only two three-year-old fillies to complete the Epsom Oaks-King George double in the same season. Enable (John Gosden) could attempt to become the third in 2017, having been left in today. 
 
Owned by Khalid Abdullah and from the first crop of 2011 King George winner Nathaniel, Enable added to her Epsom Classic success with a comfortable victory last time out in the G1 Irish Oaks on July 15. A final decision on her participation at Ascot on Saturday is expected on Wednesday. 

John Gosden could also be represented by the Godolphin-owned Jack Hobbs, successful in the G1 Longines Dubai Sheema Classic at Meydan in March. The five-year-old Halling horse needs to bounce back from a disappointing eighth behind Highland Reel in the Prince of Wales's Stakes last time out.
 
Hawkbill
© Racehorse Photos
Hawkbill
 
Godolphin, also after a fifth King George success, have four others going forwards. The Charlie Appleby-trained pair of Hawkbill and Frontiersman, who were first and second respectively in the G2 Princess Of Wales's Stakes over 12 furlongs at Newmarket on July 13, are joined by G3 Hampton Court Stakes victor and Investec Derby fifth Benbatl (Saeed bin Suroor) and likely pacemaker Maverick Wave (John Gosden). 
 
Another winner from Royal Ascot who could return to the course on Saturday is three-year-old colt Permian (Mark Johnston), who took the G2 King Edward VII Stakes on June 23. The last horse to win both races in the same season was Nathaniel in 2011.
 
Ulysses
© Racehorse Photos

Ulysses
Sir Michael Stoute is the joint most successful trainer of all-time in the King George, with five victories. The Newmarket handler's hope in 2017 is Ulysses, triumphant last time out in the G1 Eclipse over 10 furlongs at Sandown Park on July 8. 
 
History will be created in 2017 with the first South American-trained King George runner set to line up. Sixties Song (Alfredo Dassie ARG) is a son of the 2006 St Leger winner Sixties Icon and a dual G1 winner on turf in South America, having taken the continent's premier all-aged 12-furlong contest, the Longines Gran Premio Latinoamericano at Valparaiso, Chile, in March and the Gran Premio Carlos Pellegrini at San Isidro, Argentina, in December. 
 
The Argentine-trained colt, who arrived in Britain over the weekend, is currently boarding at Abington Place Stables in Newmarket. 
 
Completing the 16 five-day confirmations (up from 10 at the same stage in 2016) are 2016 G1 Prince Of Wales's Stakes winner My Dream Boat (Clive Cox) and the David Simcock-trained pair of Desert Encounter, third to Ulysses in the Eclipse last time out, and Algometer, third on his latest start in the Princess Of Wales's Stakes.

King George VI And Queen Elizabeth Stakes
(Sponsored By Qipco) (British Champions Series) (Group 1)
£1,150,000 added, 3yo plus, 1m 3f 211y, Class 1
16 remaining entries
Going: Soft, Good to Soft in places

Form Horse Age Wgt Trainer
1716-23 Algometer 16 4 9-7 D M Simcock
13251 Benbatl 37 3 8-10 S bin Suroor
132-123 Desert Encounter (IRE) 21 5 9-7 D M Simcock
1-3111 Enable 14 3 8-7 J H M Gosden
16-4122 Frontiersman 16 4 9-7 C Appleby
3-51361 Hawkbill (USA) 16 4 9-7 C Appleby
212-711 Highland Reel (IRE) 38 5 9-7 A P O'Brien
21U5-61 Idaho (IRE) 35 4 9-7 A P O'Brien
13/P3-18 Jack Hobbs 38 5 9-7 J H M Gosden
1/3-4571 Johannes Vermeer (IRE) 27 4 9-7 A P O'Brien
50200-4 Maverick Wave (USA) 35 6 9-7 J H M Gosden
554-324 My Dream Boat (IRE) 27 5 9-7 C G Cox
211012 Permian (IRE) 15 3 8-10 M Johnston
1- Sixties Song (ARG) 224 4 9-3 Alfredo Dassie
28-3203 US Army Ranger (IRE) 35 4 9-7 A P O'Brien
124-131 Ulysses (IRE) 21 4 9-7 Sir Michael Stoute

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