Thursday 2 July 2020 4:30 pm

Frankie can be the Darling of Epsom again

Bill Esdaile is City A.M. racing editor and managing director of Square in the Air.

TRAINERS Aidan O’Brien and John Gosden have saddled seven of the last eight winners of the Investec Oaks (3.40pm) and it is long odds-on that they will extend that sequence on Saturday as they are responsible for the first three in the betting.

The betting suggests O’Brien should land the race for an eighth time as he saddles emphatic 1000 Guineas winner Love who bids to follow in the hoofprints of Minding, who pulled off the same Newmarket-Epsom double back in 2016.

It was the stunning nature of Love’s acceleration in the Guineas that slightly puts me off taking a best-priced 6/5 about her adding her name to such an illustrious role of honour.

Being a daughter of Galileo, she has every chance of staying the trip, but her dam Pikaboo never stayed an inch further than a mile and that has to be a worry.

She is without doubt an exceptional filly, but I just have the feeling she is taking on a potentially even better one over this trip in the shape of FRANKLY DARLING.

John Gosden’s daughter of Frankel burst into the Oaks picture with an impressive reappearance demolition job at Newcastle last month and was then even more impressive when upped to this trip at Royal Ascot.

She was plenty keen enough in the Ribblesdale Stakes and still quickened up to beat Ennistymon in really taking fashion.

There are no stamina doubts with her and she has already proven her class.

At the prices, I’d far rather take some of the 2/1 available that she gives Frankie Dettori a sixth win in the race.

In fact, she may just have most to fear from Ennistymon who she beat at Ascot who is entitled to get even closer if ridden a little more positively.

I’ll be pairing Frankly Darling and Ennistymon in an Exacta with the as if Love doesn’t stay, she may end up fading back in third.

If she is out of the frame it may pave the way for a healthy return.


Frankly Darling 2/1 3.40pm Epsom

Tote Exacta – 3.40pm Epsom

Frankly Darling


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