Mary Tudor needs to defy a penalty in a red-hot renewal of the Irish Stallion Farms EBF Naas Oaks Trial on Wednesday evening.
Willie McCreery’s filly is already a Listed winner this season , having claimed the Salsabil Stakes at Navan, but there are some promising and unexposed opposition among the 10-runner field.
“It’s a good race. Everyone wants to see where they go from here and whether it is worth running in the Oaks,” said McCreery.
“She’s in great form. She won’t be unfazed by running on quicker ground so we’ll have to see how we go.
“She’s won over 10 furlongs already so it should suit her, although it will be a lot different ground than it was in Navan when she won over it. The further we go with her the better she should be.
“I hope she proves hard to beat and that we go on to the Oaks.
“She seems to go through soft ground. Truth be known, her Listed win hasn’t really worked out but she’s a big filly and is still growing – she’ll be a nice four-year-old.
“The penalty will make it tougher but that is the price you pay. I haven’t had a good look through the race because I might get sick if I did!”
Ger Lyons runs the unbeaten Espere in the Snow Fairy colours of Anamoine Limited and racing manager Patrick Cooper said: “She’s progressing nicely, working her way up the ladder and this is the natural next step.
“It’s a fairly big step but it is the obvious one to do so we’ll find out. She couldn’t have been more impressive on her first two starts.
“We’d have liked a mark so we could have run somewhere else and in Ireland you don’t have the choice of races. We’d have liked one more run before a race like this but there you go.”
Others with claims include Dermot Weld’s impressive Gowran winner Romiyna, Ribblesdale fourth Athena, Tissiak and Scriobh Nua.