Mehdaayih outlines Classic case with impressive Cheshire Oaks verdict

John Gosden’s runner comes home clear in Chester trial

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Mehdaayih spreadeagled the field to run out an impressive winner of the Arkle Finance Cheshire Oaks at Chester.

The Listed race has provided the winner of the Oaks itself for the past two years with Enable winning in 2017 and Forever Together finishing second to Magic Wand 12 months ago.

However, trainer John Gosden and owners Emirates Park Pty Ltd would need to supplement Mehdaayih for the Classic as she is currently not entered.

She had shown a glimmer of her ability at Yarmouth last October when beating stablemate Fanny Logan, who she met again here, and William Haggas’ Maqsad, who is now one of the favourites for the Oaks after two wins this season. Mehdaayih then won on the all-weather by 14 lengths.

Sent off the 3-1 favourite, Rab Havlin settled her towards the rear of the field while Frankie Dettori chased the pace on Fanny Logan.

The field then fanned out in the straight, but Mehdaayih put the contest to bed in a matter of strides, sprinting clear to beat Manuela De Vega by four and a half lengths with Fanny Logan third.

Thady Gosden, son and assistant to the winning trainer, said: “She must have have enjoyed that bit of juice in the ground. We have to talk to the owner (to see) if we supplement for the Oaks and that is up to him.

“Mr Nasser Lootah (owner) has a lot of horses down in Australia and we will talk to him and see what he wants to do. The last race at Chelmsford was only a two-horse race and you couldn’t get a proper read of that.

“She couldn’t have done that any better and she couldn’t have done this any better.

“It was a slight unknown (the ground), but she shaped as a filly that might like a bit of juice there. They have had rain here since three in the morning quite heavily, so we were unsure but they are getting through easily enough and it is nice fresh ground.

“The other filly is a nice filly as well, and she will be a nice mile-and-a-half filly later on.

“You would imagine she would be (fine round Epsom) as she is a nice, athletic well-balanced filly, so she should be the right type.”

Havlin added: “She was a little bit sluggish away. I had it in my mind I didn’t want to be down the inside as I knew there were a couple of fillies rated in the 70s there and at some point they would stop and come back.

“She had enough turn of foot to get out before the two pole. She surprised me how she picked up. She loved the ground.

“Whether we go for the Ribblesdale or the Oaks, I will leave that to the boss. She showed a really good change of gear there. The last half-furlong she started to wander left, but I think she had a bit left up her sleeve.”

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