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Wednesday, 12 December, 2018

Mary Tudor out to claim crown and shed maiden tag in the process

Willie McCreery: obviously holds Mary Tudor in high regard
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2.30 Naas
C.L. & M.F. Weld Park Stakes (Group 3) 2yo | 7f | ATR

Key angles

If you are concerned that Mary Tudor arrives here a maiden, don't be. Aidan O'Brien sent out Coolmore to shed her maiden tag in this very race in 2015 when it was run at the Curragh and the fact Willie McCreery has resisted the temptation of mopping up a maiden with his daughter of Dawn Approach speaks volumes. 

Although she has failed to win either of her starts to date, Mary Tudor brings the best form into the race having been placed behind the exciting Magical on both occasions. 

Mary Tudor shaped with significant promise on her debut in a mile Cork maiden and confirmed those encouraging signs by finishing third in the Group 2 Debutante Stakes at the Curragh last month.

The form of that contest could not be working out better with the first two home (Magical and Happily) subsequently finishing within a short head of each other when first and second in the Group 1 Moyglare Stakes earlier this month.

O'Brien seeks fourth win in six years

Aidan O'Brien has won this Group 3 for three of the last five years - with Magical Dream (2012), Qualify (2014) and Coolmore (2015) - and there is a three-pronged attack from Ballydoyle this time around.

Sizzling is the choice of Ryan Moore, not a surprise following her solid Doncaster display ten days ago and the fact that she boasts a rating of 103.

Speaking about his three contenders, Aidan O'Brien said: "Sizzling is dropping back in trip following her good run in the May Hill at Doncaster ten days ago. She's had an easy week but seems in good form.

"Ballet Shoes was a bit disappointing in the Moyglare but her previous form was good and we think she will improve on her last run. Athena is a nice filly who has had just the one run and we think she has progressed." 

Can British-based fillies end their drought?

You have to trawl all the way back to the Mick Channon-trained Eva's Request in 2007 to find the last British-based winner of the race but the drought could end today as Charlie Hills sends over seven-length Goodwood maiden winner Juliet Foxtrot, while Karl Burke runs recent Doncaster scorer Ellthea. 

Burke said of Ellthea: "She was all set to go to Ayr on Saturday for an easier-looking race. She has come out of Doncaster really well but she has a problem with her seasons so there is a slight worry about the travelling bringing it on. We will see in the morning."

Weld bidding for back-to-back wins

Dermot Weld was successful last year with Eziyra, who now has the Group 1 Fillies & Mares Stakes on British Champions Day on her agenda, and he relies upon Fille Du Septembre in bidding for a repeat success. 

Weld said: "She's a nice filly who won early in the season. We're hoping she will pick up some black type but we don't want to see any more rain."

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Sizzling is dropping back in trip following her good run in the May Hill at Doncaster ten days ago. She's had an easy week
E.W. Terms
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