Racing: Jibe tables her Oaks credentials

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The Independent Online
Racing

JIBE entered the picture for the Oaks at Epsom on 5 June after effecting repairs to a damaged reputation at Newbury yesterday. Two spring defeats at Newmarket - a third in the Nell Gwyn Stakes and a 1,000 Guineas eighth - appeared to have sunk the reputation of Henry Cecil's filly as a Classic prospect. But, her nets cast in the easier waters of the Listed Newbury Trial Stakes, she justified odds-on favouritism to rekindle hopes she might be up to beating the best.

fourth of the quintet for Kieren Fallon as Genoa cut out the running, she moved towards the lead with three furlongs of the 10 to travel. Taking it up passing the two pole, she still had to be punched out vigorously by Kieren Fallon to beat Genoa by three and a half lengths to justify favouritism.

The winner's full-sister Yashmak, who won this race 12 months ago, went on to finish fourth to stablemate Reams of Verse in the Oaks, and Jibe is a 16-1 shot for the second fillies' Classic with William Hill, who quote Cecil's Musidora runner-up Midnight Line, the likely mount of Fallon, at 3-1.

Grant Pritchard-Gordon, racing manager to Jibe's owner Prince Khalid Abdullah, explained that discussions will take place before it is decided which of the Prince's fillies - he also owns Cheshire Oaks winner High And Low and Lingfield Oaks Trial heroine Bristol Channel - runs at Epsom.

"We have to talk to the owner, who has had the privilege of winning three Oaks trials," he said.

"With a filly as well bred as this, you want to give her every chance to fulfil her potential but whether she is good enough I don't know."

Pritchard-Gordon put Jibe's 1000 Guineas disappointment down to one factor, an inadequate trip.

"She had been working well and the stable was in form but in retrospect she was at the wrong distance," he added.

Cecil saddled a rare 33-1 chance for the Crookham Maiden Stakes in the form of Prince Khalid's Eaton Square.

The Nureyev colt, the mount of Tony McGlone, was reckoned inferior to stablemate and fellow debutant On The Ridge but produced a strong run down the stands' side.

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