Angus McNae - Friday 31st May 2013
Say each-way is the call!
In my opinion Secret Gesture is a very solid favourite for the Investec Oaks, but was the Lingfield Oaks trial her big day? Could she regress from that just when she needs to improve? If she does not move forward from that she could be vulnerable and Say is the one for me at an each-way price that appeals.
Here is my pocket guide to the race.
1. Banoffee - Two from two so far and was a cosy slow time winner at Chester last time. Kieren Fallon likes her and she has been supplemented but is that really going to be money well spent?
2. Gertrude Versed - Second to Banoffee last time out. No prizes for deducing she has plenty to do.
3. Liber Nauticus - Two from two including a win in the Musidora last time. She is open to improvement over 12 furlongs and has the brilliant Ryan Moore on board. In two starts has not achieved enough to say she will win. Does she carry her head high under pressure or do I need glasses?
4. Madam Defarge - Second to Talent at Newmarket, not guaranteed to stay. Good luck.
5. Miss You Too - Beaten 10 lengths by Secret Gesture at Lingfield having pulled hard early on. Bred to stay but is too keen and has loads to find with the favourite.
6. Moth - Strong finishing third in the 1000 Guineas. Just because she was running on over a mile at Newmarket does not make her a bet in a Group One over a mile and a half. She is lightly raced and talented and should go well but dam's side of the pedigree not loaded with stamina. Guineas run could be misleading.
7. Roz - No chance of staying on pedigree.
8. Say - Easy winner of a Cork maiden over 12 Furlongs and pedigree is laden with stamina. Could be a surprise package here. She is by Galileo out of a Dynaformer mare and as such will be galloping when plenty of these cry enough.
9. Secret Gesture - Visually impressive in the Lingfield Oaks trial. Time was good too. A worthy favourite and the one to beat.
10. Talent - Won the Pretty Polly at Newmarket despite being keen. A talented filly who Ralph Beckett likes a lot. She should stay on pedigree and if she settles she is a player.
11. The Lark - Held up in a slowly run trial at Newbury and did well to finish third. Much more needed though.
To sum up I think Say is the bet each-way in the Oaks. She has almost guaranteed stamina and untapped potential, which makes her very interesting against a favourite who could regress from a big effort at Lingfield.
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