GBI RACING

Wedding Date in frame for Royal Ascot warm-up in France

Wedding Date was a winner at Chester (Martin Rickett/PA)

Connections of Wedding Date are contemplating taking in a trip to France ahead of a potential shot at the Queen Mary Stakes at Royal Ascot.

The Richard Hannon-trained two-year-old could contest the Listed Prix la Flesche at Maisons-Laffitte over five furlongs on June 1 after going one better than on her debut at Brighton when running out an emphatic winner at Chester.

Tim Palin, spokesman for owners Middleham Park Racing, said: “We didn’t expect her to win like that. We knew the horse had ability and we were disappointed she didn’t win on her debut, but she didn’t handle the track and she was probably beaten by a good horse.

“She powered through the final furlong and with that sort of performance it is one that leaves you casting your eye over races at Royal Ascot.

“The decision now is whether to go straight to Royal Ascot or to a Listed race in France at Maisons-Laffitte.

“We will look at the opposition in France and make a decision two or three days beforehand. She was in the Marygate at York, but that came too soon after Brighton and Chester.

“If she goes straight to Ascot she will probably go for the Queen Mary rather than the Albany. It is a stiff five furlongs at Ascot and that will play to her strengths.”

Stablemate Star Of Southwold could also be set for an appearance at the Royal meeting, with King George V Stakes earmarked as possible target.

Palin said: “He won his maiden at Newmarket well but then he got shuffled back in the Derby trial at Lingfield.

“We were going to the Dee Stakes at Chester, we didn’t think he would handle the track as he is a big horse but he didn’t handle the track at Lingfield, either, so you can put a line through that.

“He will probably go for the King George V Stakes at Royal Ascot, as I would think he will get in off 89.”

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