Hammiya won the Listed UPM-Kymmene Cheshire Oaks on May 7 on her most recent start. Santa Sophia was successful in the Listed Oaks Trial at Lingfield on May 10. Yesterday, the recent Entenmann's Irish 1,000 Guineas winner, and L'Ancresse, fourth in the same race, are out to provide trainer Aidan O'Brien with his third Vodafone Oaks victory after Shahtoush (1998) and Imagine (2001). Godolphin now has two entries – Hi Dubai and Mezzo Soprano – and they are aiming to follow previous winners Balanchine (1994), Moonshell (1995) and Kazzia (2002). There is another Irish filly left in, Snippets, who came third to Hammiya in the Cheshire Oaks. Jim Bolger, who sent out Jet Ski Lady to a shocking 50/1 Vodafone Oaks victory in 1991, trains her. Several of these fillies met in the first fillies' classic, the mile Sagitta 1000 Guineas, at Newmarket on May 4. Hanami finished well to take fifth and William Farish's Casual Look was sixth. Summitville (seventh), Yesterday (eighth), Mezzo Soprano (14th) and L'Ancresse (15th) also competed. Sir Michael Stoute has enjoyed Vodafone Oaks success with Fair Salinia (1978) and Unite (1987) and the Newmarket trainer has two hopes, the Cheshire Oaks second Halawanda and the Listed Swettenham Stud Fillies' Trial Stakes runner-up Waldmark.
Trainer John Gosden could be represented by High Praise, victorious in the Group Three Prix des Reservois at Deauville in 2002. Geminiani, unbeaten in her two starts last season, including in Listed company at Goodwood, where Inchberry was second, put up a pleasing seasonal debut when second in the Group Three Tattersalls Musidora Stakes at York on May 13. The two others going forward are Hearts 'n Mind and Thingmebob.
The Vodafone Oaks and Vodafone Coronation Cup, together with the Vodafone Derby, form part of the first leg of the British Horseracing Board's exciting new Summer Triple Crown and Grand Slam Series which offers a bonus of £5 million.
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