Frankie Dettori can warm up for the Derby 75 minutes later by winning the Investec Oaks on John Gosden’s Frankly Darling.
By Frankel, some of whose offspring can be a bit edgy, the Anthony Oppenheimer homebred from one of his long established families can make the most of a crowd-free Epsom to add the fillies’ Classic to the Ribblesdale Stakes which she won at an empty Ascot just over a fortnight ago.
She stepped up nicely on her Newcastle reappearance at Ascot, beating Ennistymon an eased down length and three quarters despite over-racing in the early stages and, one hopes, for her fourth run she will be getting the hang of settling rather than going the other way. To that end it looks like she will have Tiempo Vuela to ensure the pace.
“She’s still learning and a bit wild,” said Gosden at Ascot, admitting there was something of her sire about her and pointing out that her attitude was: “I want to run and it’s my business if I want to run, not the jockey’s.”
Gosden has won three of the last six runnings of the race while Aidan O’Brien has won the other three and it looks a match between those two.
The obvious danger as O’Brien seeks an eighth Oaks is his 1,000 Guineas winner Love, who was impressive, although that race does not look quite as good as the colt’s equivalent the day before won by Kameko. By Galileo, she should stay well.
On a bumper weekend for racing, Gosden and Dettori will start the six-year-old wonder-mare Enable off in the Coral-Eclipse. Her long-term aim remains a third Prix de L’Arc de Triomphe.
However, Gosden has made no bones about the fact that, aged six, she is getting harder to get fit at home and she may have to give best to Godolphin’s Ghaiyyath. She beat him last year’s Arc but he looked sensational breaking the track record over a mile and a half at Newmarket in the Coronation Cup.
There is a suggestion that he needs a longer break, 100-plus days, between his races to be at his absolute best but he can let rip in front and be hard to catch.