Cecil delays decision

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The Independent Online
Backers of Henry Cecil's Oaks fillies Reams of Verse and Yashmak will have to wait another week before connections rule on their participation in the Classic. Grant Pritchard-Gordon, owner Khalid Abdullah's racing manager, announced yesterday that no decision would be taken until after this Saturday's Irish 1,000 Guineas. Bookmakers cut Reams Of Verse to 5-4 favourite for the Oaks after a runaway win at York while Yashmak became her nearest rival with a similar victory at Newbury on Friday.

Cecil is leaving any decision on their targets to Prince Khalid but the Saudi has three other Oaks entrants to run within the next seven days. Pritchard-Gordon said: "Keyboogie runs in the Lupe at Goodwood, Fleeting Glimpse contests the Prix Saint-Alary at Longchamp tomorrow and Ryafan goes for the Irish 1000 Guineas. It's only fair to see how they run before any decision is made."

Meanwhile, at Thirsk yesterday trainer Jack Berry and jockey John Egan had mixed fortunes. Berry completed a double with Laurel Pleasure and Forest Treasure, who booked herself a trip to Royal Ascot next month. But he lost Laurel Pleasure, claimed for pounds 15,000 after winning the Skipton Claiming Stakes.

Egan registered a success on Jack Flush in the Rothman's Royals North South Challenge Series Handicap. But he picked up a six-day suspension for irresponsible riding on Young Ibnr in Forest Treasure's race. Egan was adjudged to have crossed over to the rails too soon after the start on Young Ibnr, who was found to have interfered with Hirst Bridge (in third), who in turn hampered the winner, Forest Treasure. The stewards suspended Egan from 26-31 May.

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