York’s Musidora Stakes takes centre stage on the first day of York’s May meeting on Wednesday. It commemorates the filly who won both the 1,000 Guineas and Oaks in 1949.
Trained by Captain Charles Elsey at Malton, she won only once from six starts at two. However, she began her three-year-old season by winning the Roseberry Stakes at Stockton. She then went on to win the 1,000 Guineas, ridden by Edgar Britt. Her next race was the Oaks, for which she started 4/1 favourite. Ridden again by Britt, she was all out to win by a neck form the French raider Coronation V.
She ran three more times, failing to reach the first three in the Yorkshire Oaks, the St Leger and the Doonside Plate at Ayr. At stud, she produced three minor winners.
This year’s Musidora Stakes
This year’s race looks a sub-standard renewal. Aidan O’Brien has no runners, which is a surprise. It should rest between the William Haggas-trained Give And Take and John Gosden’s Highgarden. They met in a 1m 2f Sandown novice race last month, finishing second and third respectively behind Sir Michael Stoute’s Crystal Hope (who runs at Newbury on Saturday), with a length and a quarter between them. Both were running on in the closing stages so Wednesday’s trip should pose no problem.
Of their five rivals, Ceilidhs Dream got up close home to win a 1m maiden fillies’ race at Newmarket’s Craven meeting and could improve. Dancing Brave Bear and Etiyah are both unbeaten but have done their winning on the all-weather.
Lubinka’s limitations were exposed when sixth in the Group 1 Fillies’ Mile last year. She won a class 6 median auction maiden at Lingfield last month, so this is a big step up. The same applies to outsider Expensive Liaison. Her short head win at Beverley last week is a cut below this level.
I’ll go for Give And Take to confirm the Sandown form with Highgarden.