Wesley Ward will give Lady Pauline an early taste of Ascot in the Irish Thoroughbred Marketing Royal Ascot Two-Year-Old Trial Conditions Stakes on Wednesday – on what looks set to be a star-studded card.
Ward is synonymous with his raids on the Royal meeting in June, but did bring Create A Dream over to win the corresponding race in 2016 before going on to finish fourth in the Albany Stakes.
Lady Pauline is certainly bred to be good as a half-sister to Lady Aurelia – twice a winner at the Royal meeting for Ward – and she won by almost 10 lengths on her debut over four and a half furlongs.
Ward said on Thursday afternoon: “She’s on her way over right now.
“I expected her to do what she did on her debut, to be honest. Obviously she came into the yard as a half-sister to Lady Aurelia, so you’re expecting something anyway.
“Whereas Lady Aurelia looked a speedball, she actually needed two or three works to really catch on, but this filly, from the first breeze, has been right on it.
“I gave Johnny (Velazquez) the option to come over next week, but said to him he didn’t have to because I could ask Frankie (Dettori) and he was like, ‘oh no, I’m going’ – he didn’t want to let Frankie in the door!”
Ward traditionally brings a strong team and Anna’s Fast will be on the plane after winning at Keeneland recently.
“Her owners had so much fun last year with Shang Shang Shang in the Norfolk that they wanted to get another to go back to Ascot, and in Anna’s Fast it looked like they have,” Ward told Press Association Sport.
“The one who has impressed just as much as Lady Pauline, certainly numbers-wise, is Nayibeth, she looks like she may get further so I’m looking at the Albany for her.
“She exudes class, she’s by an unproven sire in Carpe Diem, but she looks something special.”
John Gosden has entered Calyx in the Merriebelle Stable Commonwealth Cup Trial Stakes, with the meeting appearing to have captured the imagination in its new guise as Royal Ascot Trials Day.
The Coventry Stakes winner will gallop at Newmarket on Friday morning and whether he runs in the 2000 Guineas or at Ascot will be decided in the coming days.
The race – registered as the Pavilion Stakes – has attracted 14 entries, including Queen Mary winner Signora Cabello.
Scottish Champion Hurdle heroine Verdana Blue is one of 10 in the Group Three Sagaro Stakes, against the likes of Capri, Dee Ex Bee and Raymond Tusk.
In the Ascot Shop Paradise Stakes, a trial for the Queen Anne, Barney Roy is the standout name. Formerly trainer by Richard Hannon, he is now with Charlie Appleby having proved infertile at stud.
Wadilsafa and the last two Lincoln winners, Addeybb and Auxerre, catch the eye.