Havlin retains Mehdaayih mount in Oaks at Epsom

Chester winner one of 14 declarations

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Robert Havlin retains the ride Mehdaayih as she faces 13 rivals in Friday’s Investec Oaks at Epsom.

The jockey partnered John Gosden’s charge when she ran out an impressive winner of the Cheshire Oaks, with the yard’s first rider Frankie Dettori opting to ride the third-placed Fanny Logan that day.

Dettori subsequently rode Anapurna to win the Lingfield Oaks Trial for Gosden and he has decided to stick with that filly, leaving Havlin to maintain his relationship with Mehdaayih, who was supplemented for the race last Saturday.

Havlin said: “I wasn’t surprised to win (at Chester), but I was surprised by how well she quickened up.

“You wouldn’t think stamina will be a problem the way she finished off her race on easy ground that day.

“She wears a hood in the paddock and can get on her toes but once she’s under way she’s very straightforward. Like Anapurna, she wants to get on with things.

“The pair of them are nimble, light-framed fillies and I don’t expect Epsom will give either of them any issues.”

Aidan O’Brien’s Pink Dogwood, who is a sister to Irish Derby winner Latrobe, is the ante-post favourite after winning a Listed race at Navan on her only outing to date this season.

She was beaten just a length and a half in the Prix Marcel Boussac at ParisLongchamp last season and has been mooted as Ballydoyle’s number one contender for this race ever since.

O’Brien also runs Delphina, Fleeting and Peach Tree.

William Haggas is another with two solid chances in Pretty Polly winner Maqsad and Musidora second Frankellina.

Ralph Beckett’s Manuela De Vega, Dermot Weld’s Tarnawa and Amanda Perrett’s Lavender’s Blue can not be discounted either.

Blue Gardenia and Sh Boom complete the field, with dual Guineas winner Hermosa and Joseph O’Brien’s Iridessa the two withdrawals at the final declaration stage.

The Oaks is the second race in the Fillies & Mares category of the 2019 Qipco British Champions Series.

Havlin retains Mehdaayih mount in Oaks at Epsom
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