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Royal Ascot - Horse Racing: Keith Melrose's Day Four Tips

The second half of Friday's Royal Ascot card contains two of the hottest handicaps of the week. Racing Post betting editor Keith Melrose offers the best bets.

You can watch all the action at Royal Ascot unfold via our Sports Live Streaming service.

5.00 Royal Ascot

Persist @ 12/1

1pt each-way

5.35 Royal Ascot

Ottoman Fleet @ 2/1

1pt win

6.10 Royal Ascot

Tippy Toes @ 25/1

1pt each-way

Regally-bred sort to land Royal win

Bet365 will be offering seven places on the Sandringham Handicap (5.00) and the most appealing bet in the field is the outstandingly bred Persist. She is by Frankel out of Persuasive, who won the QEII over this course and distance in 2017.

Persist looked much improved when winning at Ripon on her first run of the season last time. She started the run up the straight a long way behind, which can be insurmountable at Ripon.

However, within a furlong or two Tom Marquand was finding trouble so his mount would not hit the front too soon and she streaked away to win. She looks a snip to win handicaps off her mark of 83 and is worth siding with even in this red-hot affair.

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Blue day in the King Edward VII

Changingoftheguard is favourite on the back of his Derby fifth, but he ought to have run even better from where he was at the top of the straight at Epsom. In short, he is beatable and Ottoman Fleet looks the obvious alternative in the 5.35.

The selection made his debut in April, when he was second in a warm race at Newbury. Sent straight into Listed company, he was a convincing winner despite blowing the start and showing signs of greenness.

His inexperience is of no great concern, Charlie Appleby would have had umpteen alternative runners in this race had there been any doubts over Ottoman Fleet.

He is from an excellent, generally late-maturing family and is expected to improve considerably on his third run.

Johnstons can stand tall

There is a red-hot cluster of pace down the middle in the closing Palace Of Holyroodhouse Handicap (6.10), in which bet365 are again offering seven places.

The pace will be part of the reason Ladies Church's price is tightening all the time, but she has form claims too.

It is being forgotten that Tippy Toes will get the same pace benefits and holds some form which is almost as strong.

Tippy Toes went straight from handicaps to Listed level on her first run this year and ran out a clear-cut winner from established Listed-class fillies.

She was only sixth next time, but that was in the Sandy Lane Stakes and the first four from that race will all run in the Commonwealth Cup.

She might have done even better, too, had she not missed the break and endured trouble in running. She has a good pace set-up and looks to have the class to overcome her mark, prices north of 20-1 are much too big.

By Keith Melrose

What: Royal Ascot Day Four

Where: Ascot, Berkshire

When: 2.30 to 6.10

How to watch: bet365's Sports Live Streaming, ITV and Sky Sports Racing

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