Horses To Follow » Talent


The first half of the Oaks was run at a really strong pace, the leading three fillies were all beaten two furlongs out, and while Talent sat well off that pace – she was in the last pair until the top of the home straight – she did plenty wrong and still won really well.

Immediately restrained from the stalls by Richard Hughes, she was keener than ideal through the early stages in last place. She did drop the bridle after a couple of furlongs, but she was keen again as the pace slackened around halfway and she was very keen down around Tattenham Corner. She was going really strongly at the top of the home straight but got chopped in her run at the three-furlong pole as Moth came out on top of her as she tried to push up between horses, and she had to wait for Moth to improve before following her through.

Taken to the outside when in the clear two furlongs out, she had five lengths to find on her stable companion Secret Gesture, but she quickly hit top stride, overhauled the leader just inside the final furlong and drew right away to win by nearly four lengths.

This was just Talent’s fourth ever run, she has improved a lot with each of them, and this was another big step up on her win in the Pretty Polly Stakes at Newmarket on her reappearance. She is by New Approach out of a Peintre Celebre mare, she clearly stayed the trip really strongly, she will be tough to beat in the Irish Oaks and she could even be a St Leger filly if she can settle a bit better. She was under-rated coming into the race with most of the focus on her better-fancied stable companion, and she may be under-rated still as a 20/1 winner of an Oaks in which they went too quickly early on. However, she is not impressive at home apparently, she reportedly performed poorly on her final piece of work before the Oaks, which is obviously why Secret Gesture was always the Ralph Beckett Oaks number one. She could remain under-rated.

31st May 2013