Burke wants pace for Laurens at Chantilly

Laurens and jockey PJ McDonald
Laurens and jockey PJ McDonald
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Trainer Karl Burke is hoping there will be a stronger gallop as his stable star Laurens heads back to France tomorrow in the Group One Prix de Diane Longines.

Trainer Karl Burke is hoping there will be a stronger gallop as his stable star Laurens heads back to France tomorrow in the Group One Prix de Diane Longines.

The Leyburn handler’s filly beat Freddie Head’s With You by a short head in the Prix Saint-Alary at Paris Longchamp last month.

The 1,000 Guineas runner-up faces another of Head’s horses, Luminate, ridden by Frankie Dettori at Chantilly tomorrow.

Laurens had to do most of the donkey work the last time she was over the Channel and rallied after being headed over a furlong out to get back up close home to land the Group One spoils.

Burke said: “If they go a good gallop and we can get on a nice, even keel sat handy, that would be perfect.

“We’ve already had a look at a mile and two and this gives us another opportunity, hopefully in a truer run race, to see how she’s finishing her race out.

“I’d be very surprised if we don’t give her a go at some stage over a mile and a half, whether it’s the Irish Oaks or the Yorkshire Oaks. We’ll be dictated by how well she comes out of this race.”

Dettori knows what it takes to claim the French version of the Oaks, having been successful with West Wind (2007) and Star Of Seville (2015), and is feeling confident about his mount’s chances.

Winner of her first three starts, Luminate was second past the post in the Prix Cleopatre after struggling to get a run but was demoted to fifth following a stewards’ inquiry with Castellar, who reopposes, taking the prize.

“Luminate was unlucky last time and she certainly stays this trip,” said Dettori.

“She has an advantage compared to the foreign fillies in that she is playing ‘at home’. As the travel factor, taking into account above all the heat, is never an easy bridge to overcome.”

Investec Oaks runner-up Wild Illusion heads 12 fillies confirmed for the Ribblesdale Stakes at Royal Ascot on Thursday at the confirmation stage.

Charlie Appleby’s talented three-year-old is burdened with a 3lb penalty for her victory in the Group One Prix Marcel Boussac at Chantilly last autumn.

Magic Wand, who was fourth in the Epsom Classic, is one of five possibles from the Aidan O’Brien stable along with Athena, Broadway, Sarrocchi and Sizzling.

Wesley Ward’s Shang Shang Shang is among 32 entries for the Group Two Norfolk Stakes.

The American raider heads the ante-post market on the strength of a comfortable debut success at Keeneland in April. O’Brien has put in seven, including Sergei Prokofiev and The Irish Rover.

The Appleby-trained Key Victory, who was seventh in the French Derby, features among 24 entries for the Group Three Hampton Court Stakes.

The Gosden-trained First Eleven, a son of Frankel, catches the eye in a 35-strong entry for the King George V Handicap judged on his five-length romp on a Newbury handicap last time.

Grand National-winning trainer Gordon Elliott has a possible for the Britannia Handicap in Mattymolls Gaga. They were 57 entries for the one-mile cavalry charge.