Day Flight likely to run while Shabernak is a possible to continue his comeback
Chester Going Is Currently Good To Soft
Blue Square sponsors the £75,000 Group Three Blue Square Ormonde Stakes for the first time at Chester on Friday, May 6, the third and final day of the North-west racecourse's famous May Festival.
The interactive bookmaker has signed a four-year deal to support this historic extended one mile, five furlong event - Blue Square also backs a mini-festival at the Roodee in August.
Teddy Beckett, racing manager to Khalid Abdulla, owner of Day Flight, revealed today: "The plan is to come to Chester for the Blue Square Ormonde Stakes but nothing is cast in stone and, if it's rock hard ground at Chester, he won't run."
Day Flight, trained by John Gosden, was beaten just over a length and a quarter by Blue Canari in last year's French Derby and is unbeaten in two starts this season including the 12-furlong Group Three Dubai Tennis Championships Stakes at Newbury on Saturday, when taking a definite advantage before holding on well from Frank Sonata by three-quarters of a length.
Beckett continued: "He's fine after Newbury and I don't think it was a bit too soft for him there - it was sticky ground actually rather than obviously soft and he did it well enough. I don't see why he won't be suited by Chester - he doesn't mind going left-handed.
"I think a turning track like Chester probably allows you a little bit more leeway as far as stepping up in trip is concerned but we'll have to see. He's by Sadler's Wells and stayed a mile and a half in a strongly-run French Derby so he ought to be able to do it."
Asked if there were any long-term plans for the four-year-old, he replied: "The Blue Square Ormonde Stakes is his current target."
Michael Bell today indicated that his classy stayer Shabernak could run in the Blue Square Ormonde Stakes, although the Newmarket is also considering another Pattern contest for the six-year-old.
He said: "Shabernak might go to Chester for the Blue Square Ormonde Stakes or for the Sagaro Stakes - I don't yet have any preference."
The Akarad gelding, who is owned by Thurloe Thoroughbreds VII, missed the whole of last season through injury, making his reappearance in the Listed Weatherbys Bank "Further Flight" Stakes at Nottingham earlier this month, when beaten just over five lengths into fourth behind Winged D'Argent.
He went from strength to strength in 2003 before picking up his injury, winning both the Sodexho Shergar Cup Stayers Rated Handicap at Ascot and the Tote Exacta Mallard Stakes at Doncaster.
Bell continued: "Shabernak has come out of his return at Nottingham well. He had a tendon injury but he's absolutely fine now. He might have a Cup campaign later on and he is entered in the Ascot Gold Cup at York."
Marcus Tregoning also reported that High Accolade, winner of the King Edward VII Stakes at Royal Ascot in 2003 and the last two runnings of the Barnardo's Cumberland Lodge Stakes at Ascot, is a possibility for the Blue Square Ormonde Stakes.
Entries for the Blue Square Ormonde Stakes close on Saturday, April 30. The three-day May Festival takes place between Wednesday, May 4, and Friday, May 6.
Ed Gretton, Chester's Clerk Of The Course, today gave his first going report - GOOD TO SOFT.
He said: "The going is Good To Soft at the moment. The forecast is for unsettled weather next week but, hopefully, it looks like we have had the worst of the rain. The course is in perfect condition, not having been raced on for seven and a half months."
ASCOT COMES TO LINGFIELD FOR THE HESMONDS STUD SAGARO STAKES MEETING
Lingfield Park is very pleased to announce Hesmonds Stud generous sponsorship of The Sagaro Stakes and two Listed races on the day, The Hesmonds Stud Paradise Stakes and The Hesmonds Stud Pavilion Stakes.
Kate Hills, Head of Public Relations for Arena Leisure said "Lingfield Park is very proud to be staging a number of Ascot Racecourse fixtures during the Royal course's major rebuilding project. The prestigious Sagaro Stakes meeting on Wednesday, April 27, is the next of the relocated fixtures at Lingfield Park and carries a total prize fund of over £150,000. We are extremely grateful to Hesmonds Stud for sponsoring the three feature races on the day, they are great supporters of Lingfield Park and very successful with their runners here."
The feature race - 'The Hesmonds Stud Sagaro Stakes' (Class1) (Group3) is for four year olds and upwards over 2 miles and is likely to attract some high class entries. The total prize fund for this race is £50,000.
The card carries two Listed races, The Paradise Stakes (Class 1) with £30,000 in prize money and run over seven furlongs, and The Pavilion Stakes (Class 1) also worth £30,000 over six furlongs.
* The meeting is televised by ATR but not terrestrial TV
* Races will be run on the Turf and AW - a mixed meeting.
* First race is scheduled for 2.10 pm there are 7 races, the last due off at 5.10 pm
* The first, sixth and seventh races are on the polytrack.
The order of races:
2.10 The Clematis Conditions Stakes (AW)
2.40 The Swinley Conditions Stakes (Turf)
3.10 The Hesmonds Stud Paradise Stakes (Turf)
3.40 The Hesmonds Stud Pavilion Stakes (Turf)
4.10 The Hesmonds Stud Sagaro Stakes (Turf)
4.40 The Rose Stakes AW (Turf)
5.10 The Come Racing Tomorrow Evening Handicap Stakes AW