Talaayeb to be aimed at Oaks after finishing fine fourth in 1,000 Guineas

Mon 8 May 2017

By Andy Stephens

Talaayeb is to be targeted at the Investec Oaks after finishing fourth to Winter in the QIPCO 1,000 Guineas at Newmarket on Sunday.

The Owen Burrows-trained filly was having only the second race of her career in the second Classic of the season but looked a possible winner approaching the final furlong only for Rhododendron, Winter and Daban to prove too strong in the closing stages.

She ended up being beaten three and a half lengths but, stoutly bred, her connections believes she was beaten for lack of speed rather than stamina.

Angus Gold, racing manager to owner Hamdan Al Maktoum, said: “Jim [Crowley] said if he could ride it again, he would love somebody just to have been with him on this (stands’) side just to have taken him into it just a little bit further.

“He got a lovely tow into it, quickened up well and then just stayed on in the last 150 yards, and just couldn’t quicken with the winner.

“I think she wants further. She doesn’t have the speed for them over a mile, albeit it is only her second-ever racecourse appearance. I think we have learned a lot – she has got a fantastic attitude and takes it all beautifully, and I think definitely she will stay, which we have always imagined on pedigree she would.”

Talaayeb is a best-priced 14-1 for  the Oaks in a market dominated by Rhododendron. The latter, who finished second in the 1,000 Guineas after meeting some trouble in running, is the general 9-4 favourite.

Gold said: “I would have thought we will definitely consider the Oaks and it felt like those first five pulled clear a bit, like it might have been a good race – it was run in a good time.

“I am delighted with her – absolutely thrilled. She is certainly bred for the Oaks and she is athletic enough for Epsom. When she won her maiden, she pinged through the gaps and looked very agile. With any luck we will go there.”

By contrast, third home Daban, who had previously won the 7f Nell Gwyn last month, will drop back in trip, with John Gosden suggesting the Jersey Stakes at Royal Ascot will be the next race on her agenda.

“She has improved and done everything right, but those beautifully-bred Galileos are a little tough over a strongly-run mile,” he said.

She is bred to go seven [furlongs]. A mile is too far for her. She is by Acclamation and with the mare [Malaspina], she is all speed. She came out of the breeze-ups so she has done well, she won the Nell Gwyn, third in the Guineas and now back to the Jersey – that is the way to go. But I couldn’t be happier with her, she ran great and put it all in.”

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