• Racing/
  • Taghrooda Slams Polly Rivals

Tweenhills Pretty Polly Stakes (Fillies' Listed) 1m 2f

  • (3yo, 1m 2f, Class 1, 6 runners)
  • Winner £22,684 2nd £8,600 3rd £4,304 4th £2,144 5th £1,076 6th £540
  • Going: Good to Firm
  • Surface: Turf
Weighed In:
  • Winning time: 2m 5.68s
  • Off time: 17:00:30
  • Last Updated: May 4 2014, 17:53 BST

Taghrooda underlined her Investec Oaks claims with a smooth victory in the Tweenhills Pretty Polly Stakes at Newmarket.

Taghrooda: Slashed for the Oaks
Taghrooda: Slashed for the Oaks

John Gosden's charge had been backed into favouritsim for the Epsom Classic in recent days and the even-money market leader here never looked in danger of defeat.

Sound Reflection cut out the early running but from the moment Paul Hanagan took Taghrooda to the front two out this was a one-filly race.

Lengthening clear upon meeting the rising ground, the winner went on to score by six lengths from Jordan Princess (13/2) and Sky Bet reacted by cutting her to 3/1 (from 7s) for the Oaks.

Spokesman Michael Shinners said: "Epsom clues looked thin on the ground in the 1000 Guineas but Taghreda more than lived up to the hype an hour or so later and the further she went the better she looked."

Gosden said: “The ground had dried up which was a concern but she has done it well and she wants a mile and a half now.

“The trials come too quick at York (Musidora) and Newbury (Swettenham Stud), and the Goodwood one (Height Of Fashion Stakes) is too late. We can always take her to Epsom and have a look around as they have an open day and her father got round there no problem.”

Hangan feels Taghrooda’s temperament will suit the hurly-burly of Oaks day.

He said: “I didn’t have to ask her a question although it was a stop-start race – you get that sometimes in small fields. I think with a bigger field and a stronger gallop she would have been so much better.

“She is by Sea The Stars and every Sea The Stars I’ve ridden has been very laid back and has a great temperament. You have to have that temperament to handle the big days and she is so relaxed. So with Epsom in mind, that’s a big plus.

“The ground might have been a bit quick for her today but it rode like a good race.”

Luca Cumani, trainer of runner-up Jordan Princess, praised the efforts of the Newcastle maiden winner on her first attempt in Listed company.

“We are very pleased with her as the winner looks very good and she was a bit stronger than us, as she was ready to run earlier than we were,” said Cumani.

“She will come on for that and we will now have a think about where to go next and if to step her up in trip.”

A step up in trip also beckons for Sound Reflection who eventually finished third.

 £I am pleased to be honest as she was just doing things a bit wrong at home,” said trainer Charlie Appleby.

“Mickael (Barzalona) set a nice steady gallop and she stayed on nicely. The obvious thing now is to step her up in trip. We have not got any targets for her but I imagine we will try find another Listed race for her.”