Newspaper article Evening Gazette (Middlesbrough, England)

Don't Desert Meehan's Lady

Newspaper article Evening Gazette (Middlesbrough, England)

Don't Desert Meehan's Lady

Article excerpt

Byline: NAOMI MATTHEW

LADY Of The Desert enjoyed no luck at all in the French 1000 Guineas but can claim just compensation tomorrow with victory in the Coronation Stakes (3.50) at Royal Ascot.

Brian Meehan's charge ended last season as one of the leading contenders for Classic glory after bagging both the Princess Margaret and Lowther, before going on to finish third behind Special Duty in the Cheveley Park Stakes.

She looked like a potential nonstayer when making her return in the Dubai Duty Free Stakes, racing far too freely before running out of steam in the final furlong.

Plenty thought the daughter of Rahy should then embark on a sprint campaign, but Meehan kept the faith and his decision was vindicated at Longchamp.

Although Lady Of The Desert was only sixth past the post, she was beaten just a length and a quarter after having her run stopped at least twice in the straight in what was a very rough race. Promoted to fifth at the subsequent inquiry, there was much encouragement to be taken from the way she thoroughly saw out her race, particularly as she had again raced quite keenly.

While a stronger pace is likely at Ascot, a factor which would certainly test her stamina, Lady Of The Desert did not look like stopping in France and she is taken to break Meehan's lengthy blank in British Group Ones.

Trainer Richard Fahey struck on the first day of the meeting courtesy of the well-backed Marine Commando so it should be noted he rates Honeymead as his best runner this week in the Albany Stakes (2.30).

The Pivotal filly cost 120,000 guineas at Tattersalls in 2008 but word of her reputation had obviously not spread as she was allowed to go off at 2-1 on her Carlisle bow.

She had to work hard to beat the odds-on favourite that day by a nose but she demonstrated a likeable attitude and should handle the step up to six furlongs.

The King Edward VII Stakes (3.05) is a tricky puzzle once again and although punters may be a little wary of Bullet Train following his disappointing Derby effort, he is worth another shot.

Henry Cecil's charge was never really travelling at Epsom and connections were convinced the undulating track was the source of his undoing. …

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