The Fugue faces tough task in Yorkshire Oaks
The Fugue is yet to win over a mile and a half but aims to lay that ghost to rest in the Group 1 Yorkshire Oaks on Thursday. John Gosden’s filly has been beaten on all three previous attempts at this distance but only went down by a neck to Shareta in this race 12 months ago.
She started this season with a promising third in the Prince Of Wales’s Stakes at Ascot when third to Al Kazeem but disappointed on her second start. She faded tamely to finish last behind the same horse in the Coral Eclipse but connections are optimistic that she is now back to her best.
Lady Cecil is doubly represented with impressive Goodwood winner Wild Coco joined by Ribblesdale winner Riposte. Wild Coco may need a bit more rain to fall on the Knavesmire to be able to show her best form whilst Riposte has to bounce back from a moderate display in the Irish Oaks.
Second that day was the Aidan O’Brien trained Venus de Milo and she has since gone on to win a Group 3 race easily at Cork. Secret Gesture was second in the Epsom Oaks and in the German Oaks and is another that may appreciate any rain that falls.
The Group 2 Lowther Stakes at 2.30 sees Brian Meehan’s impressive Nursery winner J Wonder step up in class. The second and third home in that Newmarket contest have both run well since and she looks likely to go off favourite.
Lucky Kristale has a stiff task under a penalty for her shock win in the Duchess of Cambridge Stakes and Queen Katrine could reverse the placings.
The one-mile handicap at 3.05 will be the big betting race of the day and Wentworth is sure to be popular after winning the valuable Goodwood Mile. He looks to have a tough task at the weights with Prince of Johanne and Es Que Love on Sandown form but is favourably drawn.
Queensberry Rules would have a good chance at the weights if you ignore his poor run at Ascot last time and he has Johnny Murtagh in the saddle. His trainer William Haggas also has good prospects with the lightly-raced Nezar in the opening race at 1.55.
Whatever the fate of Lady Cecil’s runners in the feature race, she could saddle a winner through Songbird in the Listed Galtres Stakes at 4.20. Ghasabah can make the most of a good handicap mark in the closing race at 4.55 under Paul Hanagan.
Selections: 1.55 Nezar, 2.30 J Wonder, 3.05 Queensberry Rules, 3.40 Venus de Milo (NAP), 4.20 Songbird, 4.55 Ghasabah (nb).