Dozen Declared For Oaks Including Beckett Quartet

Ylang YlangGetty Images


Twelve fillies will line up in Friday's G1 Betfred Oaks at Epsom, with Aidan O'Brien set to be represented by a duo headed by the likely favourite and TDN Rising Star Ylang Ylang (GB) (Frankel {GB}) drawn on the outside in 12. Ryan Moore sticks with last year's G1 Fillies' Mile winner, with Wayne Lordan on the stable's Listed Lingfield Oaks Trial runner-up Rubies Are Red (Ire) (Galileo {Ire}) who has drawn six. Their compatriot Ezeliya (Fr) (Dubawi {Ire}), The Aga Khan homebred from the Dermot Weld stable who captured the G3 Salsabil S., will be next door in five.

Ralph Beckett's quartet is made up of the Listed Cheshire Oaks first and third Forest Fairy (Ire) (Waldgeist {GB}) and Seaward (Ire) (Sea The Stars {Ire}) and the Lingfield Oaks Trial first and fourth You Got To Me (GB) (Nathaniel {Ire}) and Treasure (GB) (Mastercraftsman {Ire}), with the latter representing The King and The Queen.

Beckett is hoping the numerical approach can pay off. “We've done quite well in the race before, but it's a long time since I won it last with Talent, and since then nobody but Aidan O'Brien and the Gosdens has won. We've had plenty of tries since, but this feels like our best chance,” he said. “I think the market has them about right in terms of preference, although it got it wrong in 2013. I may have had three runners in a race a few times, but I'm pretty sure I've never had four before. Let's hope one of them is competitive!”

“Forest Fairy was very backward and immature and she had an issue at two and so didn't come to us until October. We were surprised that she was able to win like that first time out and then because her work on turf at home was good we decided to take her to Chester for the trial. You would hope she'd come forward again for that, based on her inexperience.”

“We'll do a few things differently to manage You Got To Me, and we'll be putting some different kit in her mouth. She's a tall, sparely-made filly who doesn't carry a lot of condition, so she doesn't need much training, but she appears to take her racing well. She did well to hold on at Lingfield after going so hard, although Aidan's filly Rubies Are Red came from Brighton virtually and will be tough to beat.”

“Seaward has trained well since the Cheshire Oaks and I was quite keen to come. I'd be less keen on her chance if the ground is slower than good. As for Treasure, we had been edging more towards the Ribblesdale, but we've had a change of heart. She's trained very well since then, and ground on the easy side will be in her favour. It will be very exciting to have a runner in a Classic for the King and the Queen.”

Other notables are the G3 Musidora S. scorer Secret Satire (GB) (Advertise {GB}) from the Andrew Balding yard in stall three and Godolphin's Dance Sequence (GB) (Dubawi {Ire}) in two. Last year's G3 Weld Park S. winner Caught U Looking (Ire) (Harzand {Ire}) is in stall one, often seen as disadvantageous here, while fellow outsiders Making Dreams (Ire) (Make Believe {GB}) and War Chimes (Fr) (Summer Front) make up the field.

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