By Jon Lees
GB: The Queen Anne Stakes will take place without its defending champion after Lord Glitters was ruled out of the race – if Royal Ascot goes ahead in its scheduled slot.
Lord Glitters sustained a splint injury earlier in the year and the popular grey gelding will not have recovered in time to be ready to return for Royal Ascot.
Prospects for this year’s Royal Ascot, albeit without spectators, remained alive after the government indicated professional sport could resume in Britain from June 1.
On that basis the BHA on Wednesday published a provisional Pattern programme for the first seven days of June which would retain the royal meeting in its June 16-20 slot but with some change to the order of races.
However, that would be too soon for Lord Glitters, who is now a seven-year-old. “He had a little setback early in the year with a splint which got a little inflamed and a small bit sore, so he would have missed Dubai [Dubai Turf] with that if Dubai had gone ahead,” said trainer David O’Meara in an interview with Sky Sports Racing.
“If Royal Ascot happened in June on its usual date, it would be too soon for Lord Glitters. After being held up in the winter with the splint it would be a push to have him ready for that.”
Lord Glitters has thrived over Ascot’s straight mile and in seven visits to the track has recorded two victories and three second places.
Last year he defeated Beat The Bank by a neck to secure his first G1 victory under Danny Tudhope, having finished runner-up in the race 12 months earlier.
O’Meara said: “He nearly won back-to-back Queen Annes which would have been a fair old feat. He loves Ascot. For the most part he runs very well on that straight track so we will keep going back there as long as we can.
“The Summer Mile, the Sussex, the Strensall and Skybet York Stakes – these are the types of races we’ll be looking at.”