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Ribblesdale: “Oaks” filled with improvers
by Franco Raimondi ( / Globeform ()
Last update: 2009-06-22 03:10:30 (First published: 2009-06-17 23:46:32 )

Royal Ascot Thursday: Often billed as the Ascot Oaks, the Ribblesdale Stakes (G2) has attracted an interesting field of lightly raced fillies, most of them potentially big improvers.


Royal Ascot 18 June 2009 – 1 ½ miles turf

Horses presented with best Globeform, sire
GF ratings achieved most recents starts, rider

Jockey symbols:
# = Same rider as last race
^ = Better rider than last race

109 – TAKE THE HINT (Montjeu) 109p last start / J Fortune #
107 – FLYING CLOUD (Storming Home) ?P – 107p / L Dettori
..96 – LEOCORNO (Pivotal) 96P last start / R Moore
..96 – JULY JASMINE (Empire Maker) 96P last start / M Kinane
..94 – UVINZA (Bertolini) 94 last start / J Spencer #
..93 – MOOAKADA (Montjeu) ?P – 93p / R Hills #
..87 – FLAME OF GIBRALTAR (Rock Of Gibraltar) 80p – 87p / T Queally #
..83 – ANICE STELLATO (Dalakhani) 83p last start / N Callan
…? – TOTALLY DEVOTED (Seeking the Gold) ? - ? - 0 / J Murtagh ^
…? – IT’S DUBAI DOLLY (Dubai Destination) ? - ? - ? / W d’Avila #


109 – TAKE THE HINT Lightly raced improver, this race has been the plan all along
107 – FLYING CLOUD Her form ties in well with some of the best fillies in France, big chance
..96 – LEOCORNO Visually impressive in handicap win at Sandown, beat moderate bunch though
..96 – JULY JASMINE Stayed on best of all behind Oaks runner-up Midday at Lingfield, interesting
..94 – UVINZA Filly who slammed her on last two starts lost Listed race last week, unlikely
..93 – MOOAKADA Her 2yo maiden win was impressive, same trainer as top rated, intriguing
..87 – FLAME OF GIBRALTAR Second to smart stbale companion debut, then won nicely, will stay
..83 – ANICE STELLATO Was 3 ½ lengths behind July Jasmine at Lingfield, hard to fancy
…? – TOTALLY DEVOTED A maiden from Ballydoyle, in a G2 at Royal Ascot…X
…? – IT’S DUBAI DOLLY Looks booked for last place


Take The Hint
bypassed the Oaks to go for this and continued progress would make her the one to beat. On can of course argue that she is the one to beat already, based on the form she produced to beat Three Moons in the Pretty Polly Stakes (LR) at Newmarket, but this Ribblesdale is very tricky – in that it has so many extremely lightly raced contenders. One or two of thhose lower down on the ratings can easily improve a lot, and betting on this race is not going to be done with any great confidence.

Flying Cloud, an ex-French performer running for Godolphin, has interesting form in the book. Having won both of her starts, she beat Excellent Girl and Board Meeting to land the Prix Cleopatre (G3) over 10.5 furlongs (2100 m.) at Saint-Cloud in May. Both those fillies have since run respectably behind the new French superstar Stacelita in G1 races, so one must fancy Flying Cloud against these rivals. ‘The boys in blue’ have not got off to the best of starts to this meeting, which is probably why we can get a massive 9-1 about this filly. That is a super each-way bet.

July Jasmine caught the eye when running on from a long way back to take second in the Lingfield Oaks Trial (LR). She was beaten 6 lengths by Midday, but the latter is a high class performer and just lost out narrowly against Sariska in the Oaks (G1) on her next start. A big filly with plenty of scope, July Jasmine is just the type to improve considerably with more experience, and she is sure to stay the trip.

Leocorno, like July Jasmine trained by Sir Michael Stoute, has been a bit of a hype horse but she is classy, no doubt about that. She won for fun in a handicap at Sandown Park on her seasonal debut. The second and third in that race have both been well beaten in handicaps since though, and the form is a long way off what will be required to win a G2 at Royal Ascot. That said, Leocorno loked like she could have doubled her 5-length winning margin at Sandown, and she is an exciting prospect.




WIN: Flying Cloud (9-1 generally)

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