Chester Preview: Lily Agnes Conditions Stakes (14.10)
Silver Wings created a huge impression when winning on his debut and can provide trainer David Evans with his second winner of the Lily Agnes Conditions Stakes at Chester today in a cracking renewal of the 5f contest (14.10).
Evans saddled Star Rover to victory in 2009, and in Silver Wings has a colt who looked an ideal type for the race when winning at Windsor nine days ago.
After being heavily backed into 7/2 second favourite, the son of Zebedee showed blistering early speed from the gates to make all and draw clear in the closing stages to score by a comfortable 2 1/4 lengths.
It was a most taking performance, and connections were quick to nominate this race as the next target enroute to Royal Ascot.
Silver Wings is clearly held in the highest regard, and with early speed and a good draw paramount at Chester could prove extremely difficult to beat having bagged the perfect launchpad in stall one.
Astley Hall and Rah Rah also looked exciting prospects when winning on their debuts and rate the obvious dangers.
The former is trained by in-form Richard Fahey and overcame considerable greenness when scoring by 3/4 of a length at Redcar.
Astley Hall went badly left as the stalls opened, but showed plenty of early dash to make up the lost ground before being produced to lead inside the final furlong and score readily.
The fourth home Be Bop Tango has come out and scored since to give the form a boost and, with the prospect of plenty more to come, Astley Hall looks a major player in the hands of Ryan Moore.
Trainer Mark Johnston saddled Mukhmal to win the contest 12 months ago, and Rah Rah looks the pick of his two runners this time round.
The filly receives a handy 5lb sex allowance from Astley Hall and Silver Wings, and looked potentially above average when powering clear to score by 3 3/4 lengths on the all-weather at Kempton last month.
Rah Rah couldn’t have done the job in better style, but the daughter of Lonrho now has to prove that she is just as effective on turf.