Epsom Oaks 2018: Timeform's runner-by-runner guide
Timeform bring you their comprehensive runner-by-runner guide to Friday's Epsom Oaks, and pick out their 1-2-3...
"...she is a very well-bred filly that is on the up and learning fast."
Timeform on Magic Wand
1. BYE BYE BABY (Aidan O'Brien/W.M Lordan)
Improved with each run at two, winning 7f maiden at Newmarket and 1m listed race at Navan. Came on plenty for reappearance to get off mark for season in Blue Wind Stakes at the Curragh last time (jockey put up 1 lb overweight) by two lengths from Jaega, having run of race out in front and keeping on well. Plenty to like about that display and remains open to further improvement.
2. EJTYAH (David Simcock/Jamie Spencer)
Well-made filly who won five-runner minor event (1m) at Chelmsford in 2017 and showed much-improved form when two and a half lengths third to Give And Take in Musidora Stakes at York on return. The most imposing of the field in paddock, there was plenty to like about that performance, and seems sure to improve further. Will be suited by 1½m.
3. FLATTERING (Aidan O'Brien/P.B Beggy)
Showed little amidst greenness on sole two-year-old start, but proved different proposition when winning 1¼m maiden at Cork by 10 lengths on return (relishing testing conditions). Sent off strong favourite in listed Oaks Trial at Lingfield last time as a result, but failed to progress back on firmer ground. Not bred to stay 1½m, but style of maiden win suggests she will, though she could prove ideally suited by soft/heavy ground.
4. FOREVER TOGETHER (Aidan O'Brien/Donnacha O'Brien)
Remains a maiden after three starts, but produced useful effort when three and a half lengths second to Magic Wand in Cheshire Oaks at Chester last time, hampered home turn and conceding first run. This much sterner test, but pedigree points to even better, and she will stay 1½m, so would be folly to ignore.
5. GIVE AND TAKE (William Haggas/James Doyle)
Shed maiden tag at third time of asking at Lingfield in 2017 and has made good start this season, finishing runner-up in 1¼m minor event at Sandown before winning Musidora Stakes at York last time by length from Dancing Brave Bear. Showed improved form back on firmer ground, seeing race out well, and is well worth her place here with longer trip expected to suit on breeding (dam a sister to top-class winner up to 2½m Fame And Glory).
6. I CAN FLY (Aidan O'Brien/Seamie Heffernan)
Made winning debut in 7f maiden at Dundalk before good one and a quarter lengths third to Altyn Orda in Oh So Sharp Stakes at Newmarket in 2017. Shaped encouragingly on much softer ground than previously when third in Leopardstown 1000 Guineas Trial (two lengths behind Who's Steph) on return in April, but didn't progress as expected in 1000 Guineas at Newmarket last time. Hard to explain that run, but too early to write her off. Not sure to stay 1½m 0n pedigree.
7. MAGIC WAND (Aidan O'Brien/Ryan Moore)
Cost €1,400,000 as a yearling and showed promise in two starts in maidens before producing career best to win Cheshire Oaks at Chester (by three and a half lengths from Forever Together) last time, making all and going clear over a furlong out. Good ride/easy lead shouldn't detract from how progressive she is, a very well-bred filly that is on the up and learning fast. Will stay 1½m and not to be underestimated.
8. PERFECT CLARITY (Clive Cox/Adam Kirby)
Created good impression winning sole start at two and confirmed herself highly promising as she maintained unbeaten record in listed Oaks Trial at Lingfield on return, beating Cecchini by one and a quarter lengths, appreciating the extra distance. Looked most genuine and straightforward, and open to stacks more improvement on just third career start.
9. WILD ILLUSION (Charlie Appleby/William Buick)
Smart performer at two, winning Prix Marcel Boussac at Chantilly (never far away when beating Polydream by one and a half lengths) on final start that season. Well backed, looked in good nick and shaped accordingly when good two and three quarter lengths fourth to Billesdon Brook in 1000 Guineas at Newmarket last time. Pedigree suggests she should stay this significantly longer trip (dam winner up to 2m), and should continue to give a good account.
Timeform Epsom Oaks Analyst Verdict:
As usual, Aidan O'Brien is mob-handed and could run any number of his entries, but at the prices it is MAGIC WAND who makes the most appeal at around 8/1. For all she got an easy lead at Chester last time, it was hard not to be impressed by the manner of her success, and she seems sure to improve further still. Closely related to Irish Oaks winner Chicquita, she is preferred to stablemate Bye Bye Baby, who also won well last time, but has to prove her effectiveness on firmer ground.
Timeform Oaks 1-2-3
1. Magic Wand
2. Bye Bye Baby
3. Wild Illusion