The filly was running for the third time this season, having won her previous two on her preferred soft ground – in the Group Two Hardwicke Stakes at Royal Ascot and then the Lillie Langtry at Goodwood.
Her Group One double in the Fillies & Mares Stakes on Champions Day at Ascot and the Prix de Royallieu at ParisLongchamp last season demonstrated her liking for cut in the ground – but York’s turf last week was good after the forecast rain failed to fall until the final day of the meeting.
Wonderful Tonight still took her chance in the the Group One Yorkshire Oaks, and was beaten eight and a half lengths behind Aidan O’Brien’s emphatic winner Snowfall.
Trainer David Menuisier reports her to be in good form following the run and still very much on track for her principal target of the campaign back at ParisLongchamp on October 3.
“She’s absolutely fine,” he said. “I am glad we went there, and I thought she had a good run. The ground made her work a bit harder than when she runs on soft ground, which is the opposite of most horses.
“That’s why I’m glad we ran. She came out of the race really well and she answered a few of our questions. I’m delighted that she did. For now we’ll continue to do the right thing by her and for her and hope for the best.”
Wonderful Tonight, the regular ride of champion jockey contender William Buick, is entered in the Irish Champion Stakes at Leopardstown on September 11, but Menuisier confirmed all roads lead to Paris in October.
“The Arc is still the target – more so than ever,” added the Sussex trainer.
Meanwhile Tom Dascombe has another big prize in mind as he plots the next steps for York winner Ever Given.
The two-year-old has had a busy campaign since winning on his racecourse debut in May, progressing to take three further contests – including the Goffs UK Premier Yearling Stakes on the Knavesmire last week.
The race is open only to horses purchased as yearlings from the corresponding Goffs sale at Doncaster in late August, from which Ever Given was purchased for £40,000 last year for ownership group Dandy Boys – of which former footballer Michael Owen is a member.
The Kodi Bear colt was a half-length winner from Tim Easterby’s Atomic Lady and now has another significant prize in his sights, with the Weatherbys Scientific £200,000 2-Y-O Stakes at Doncaster in September possible next.
“It would appear sensible to try to win some more decent prize money,” said Dascombe.
A step up to Listed company may then follow, with the Two-Year-Old Trophy at Redcar a late-season option for the juvenile.