Shutter Speed and Gracious Diana boost Oaks hand for John Gosden

    John Gosden served notice to Aidan O'Brien he could have a major battle on his hand in this year's Investec Oaks after Shutter Speed and Gracious Diana bolstered their Classic claims at Newbury.
  • Friday 21 April 2017
  • News

John Gosden served notice to Aidan O'Brien he could have a major battle on his hand in this year's Investec Oaks after Shutter Speed and Gracious Diana bolstered their Classic claims at Newbury.

While the Ballydoyle handler - who has won the Epsom showpiece on six occasions, including the last two renewals - is responsible for leading ante-post contender Rhododendron, Newmarket ace Gosden saw his team take shape when completing a double at the Berkshire track.

Having made a winning debut at Yarmouth, Shutter Speed was sent off a 5-4 chance to make a successful return in the Dubai Duty Free Golf World Cup EBF Stallions Conditions Stakes.

Despite her lack of experience, the daughter of Dansili looked a class above her rivals when only needing to be pushed out by Frankie Dettori to take the mile-and-a-quarter contest by two and a half lengths from Raheen House.

In doing so she became the 6-1 market leader for the June 2 Classic with Paddy Power.

Gosden, who also saddled the third Enable, said: "The idea of running them here was to get another race into them in the hope that they might be good enough to run in an Oaks trial.

"These fillies had only raced once in their lives and are both rated 84, they need the experience and that is why I brought them here.

"I thought the third ran a good race and will probably go to the Cheshire Oaks and we'll have to decide where the other one goes. There are all the obvious races, like York (Musidora)."

A return to Newbury next month looks to be on the cards for Gracious Diana after she opened her account in the Bathwick Tyres Maiden Fillies' Stakes.

Although only finishing 10th on her debut at Nottingham last year, the daughter of Foxwedge quickened away in impressive fashion to take a race won in previous years by the likes of Oaks winners Dancing Rain and Eswarah by three and a half lengths.

She was introduced at 20-1 for the Oaks by BetVictor and 16-1 by Paddy Power.

Gosden said: "She's a lovely filly and will probably come back here for the (Oaks) trial, that is the plan at the moment.

"She's a big girl and is filling into her frame and she looks rather like her grandfather, Generous."

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