Arabian Queen seeks to show girl power in Coronation Cup
29 May 2016
David Elsworth's Group One winner will bid to become first filly to win the Epsom feature since 1991
Arabian Queen already has one QIPCO British Champions Series win on her CV. Picture courtesy of Racingfotos.com
David Elsworth has given Arabian Queen the green light to tackle the Group One Queen Elizabeth II Coronation Cup at Epsom on Saturday.
She will seek to become the first filly to win the Investec-sponsored showpiece, the first race in the middle-distance category of the QIPCO British Champions Series, since In The Groove took the spoils in 1991. She was also trained by Elsworth.
Arabian Queen beat last year’s Investec Derby hero Golden Horn in the Group One Juddmonte International at York in August and confirmed her wellbeing this year when beaten a length by Usherette on her return in the Group Two Dahlia Stakes at Newmarket.
“I thought Arabian Queen ran a storming race in the Dahlia Stakes,” Elsworth said. “We felt that she might improve 7lb to 10lb for the race but she ran so well that I am not sure if she can improve that much.
“She goes round Epsom, having won the Princess Elizabeth Stakes there last year, and Postponed will frighten a few off. It’s an encounter that we are looking forward to.”
Elsworth will also be represented in Friday’s Investec Oaks by Australian Queen, who is a half-sister to Arabian Queen.
Australian Queen, who won a maiden at Lingfield Park in February, finished eighth in the Pretty Polly Stakes at Newmarket this month before coming home and fifth in the Group Two Musidora Stakes at York 11 days later.
“I thought Australian Queen ran well in the Musidora,” Elsworth said. “It was only her second start on turf and she is mentally a big, backward filly – she is a slow learner.
“So Mi Dar won by four lengths that day and we were just over five lengths further back. She fell out of the stalls and got involved coming up the straight. She will come on a ton for that, but she needs to.
A maximum field of 11 will line-up in the Oaks.
Minding, the QIPCO 1000 Guineas winner, who has since finished a close second to Jet Setting in the Irish equivalent at the Curragh, is one of five left in the race by Aidan O’Brien. His other quartet are Even Song, Somehow, Seventh Heaven and How High The Moon.
It seems unlikely all five will run, with there being doubts at Ballydoyle as to whether the track will suit either Somehow or Seventh Heaven.
Godolphin has supplemented lightly-raced Skiffle at a cost £30,000 on the back of her victory in the Listed Height Of Fashion Stakes at Goodwood. Snow Fairy took the same ten-furlong contest in 2010 on her way to Investec Oaks glory.
The supplementary entry fee, minus entry costs, has been added to the original £450,000 prize money, increasing the prize fund to £474,375 which Epsom Downs Racecourse has rounded up to £475,000.