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Monday, 19 November, 2018

Dettori plumps for Nathra as Gosden saddles three in Atalanta

Nathra bids to return to winning ways
1 of 1

3.00 Sandown
BetBright Casino Atalanta Stakes (Group 3) | 1m | 3yo+| fillies and mares | ITV4/RUK 

John Gosden fires three bullets in an attempt to win this for a second successive year with Frankie Dettori electing to ride recent Newbury third Nathra.

The four-year-old is back against her own sex after her run behind Massaat in the Hungerford Stakes last time, just her second of the year after taking time to come to hand in the spring.

Last year the daughter of Iffraaj won at this level before finishing an excellent second in the French 1,000 Guineas, a repeat of which would see her make short work of these rivals.

Gosden said: "There aren't a lot of mile races for fillies until the end of September, unless you want to run in the Group 1 Matron Stakes in Ireland, which is why we're running three in this.

"Nathra is in good form but didn't get the best of trips at Newbury and the winner had flown by the time she got going. Hopefully she can have better luck this time around, and she has a reasonable draw."

Gosden, who was on the mark with Persuasive a year ago, also fields Argentinian-bred filly Greta G, who is down in class after her sixth in the Falmouth Stakes last time, and three-year-old Dancing Breeze.

The trainer added: "Greta G has run well all year and this might be a more suitable level for her, while the plan is to get more black type for Dancing Breeze, although she isn't well drawn (13)."


THREE KEY QUESTIONS

Can Aljazzi prove her Royal Ascot run was no fluke?

Aljazzi was sent off at 40-1 last time out but may well go off favourite this time after her career-best second at Royal Ascot that day.

The Marco Botti-trained filly ran Qemah to three-quarters of a length in the Group 2 Duke of Cambridge Stakes and has been locked away at Prestige Stables to prepare for this ever since.

She has been showing up nicely in her subsequent work and a reproduction of her that effort would give in-form owners Saleh Al Homaizi and Imad Al Sagar every chance of another high-profile success.

Botti said: "We freshened Aljazzi up after Royal Ascot and decided to wait for this race as a mile looks her trip. If she runs up to her Ascot form she should have a big chance, but we wouldn't want the ground to go very soft as she has a good action."

Can previous course form prove the key?

David Elsworth has two chances of registering a first win in the race with Tisbutadream leading the charge from Egerton Stables and Somethingthrilling providing back up.

Tisbutadream has the advantage of having won over course and distance in July, when she had the reopposing Dancing Breeze in arrears in a Listed contest.

The daughter of Dream Ahead has since placed twice at Listed and Group 3 level, including a third to another of her rivals here, On Her Toes.

Elsworth said: "Tisbutadream is very consistent and we know she likes the track. There's no reason why she can't run well again, and if Somethingthrilling gets some ease in the ground she wouldn't be a no-hoper."

Can Cheveley Park win it for a third time?

Cheveley Park Stud have won this twice in recent years and also turn up two-handed, with Intimation carrying the first colours for Sir Michael Stoute after finishing second in a Group 3 at the Curragh only last weekend.

The consistent On Her Toes, trained by William Haggas is to sport the white cap, but there may not be much between them.

Haggas said: "On Her Toes may be the second string but she's in good heart and I'm sure she'll run her usual game race. She's very genuine and consistent and we're happy with her condition."

Urban Fox was fourth behind On Her Toes in the Listed Valiant Stakes at Ascot in July and Bruce Raymond, racing manager to owner Saeed Manana, said: "There are not a lot of races for her at present, although this looks a strong renewal of the Atalanta. The plan would be to try to get some black type."

There are not a lot of mile races for fillies until the end of September unless you want to run in the Group 1 Matron Stakes
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