TEMPLEGATE goes through every single runner in the Epsom Oaks and delivers his tip for third Classic of the season.
Our man picks out the pros and cons of each horse and gives them a rating out of five stars – as well as his 1-2-3 prediction.
Can Moore and O’Brien team up to win yet another Oaks?
You can find out all you need to know about the Friday blockbuster in our dedicated Epsom Oaks page.
The race is the traditional curtain-raiser to Saturday’s Derby, the most prestigious race in the world.
You can back any horse you fancy simply by clicking their odds below. Good luck!
Templegate’s Epsom Oaks runner-by-runner guide
BE HAPPY 2
SAD Happy. Showed some promise last season when third in a French Group 3 and didn’t get much luck in running when second in the Lingfield Oaks Trial on comeback behind Eternal Hope.
She handled the step up to this trip well enough. Needs a major step forward from there to figure and could end up in a pacemaker role for the more fancied Aidan O’Brien runner.
BRIGHT DIAMOND 2
DULL Diamond. She won on debut at Newmarket last season before holding her own at the highest level, especially when third in the Group 1 Fillies’ Mile at Newmarket in October.
She came back from seven months off with a fair fifth in the Lingfield Oaks Trial when she had every chance turning for home but looked a little bit one-paced.
A drop back to 1m2f could be what she needs but at least her trainer Karl Burke is in sparkling form.
FON the rise. Shaped well over a mile last season with a good win at Listed level at Newmarket in October.
Jack Channon pitched her into the 1,000 Guineas on comeback where she ran much better than her 25-1 odds to finish fourth.
She was doing her best work at the finish so this longer trip could bring more improvement. Not out of it each-way.
ETERNAL HOPE 3
HOPE springs. Was having just her third run when winning the Lingfield Oaks Trial with plenty left in the tank.
That wasn’t the strongest race but she saw out the trip well and is certain to improve.
We know she sees out this trip and trainer Charlie Appleby has an excellent record at the highest level. Definite place player.
HEARTACHE TONIGHT 3
ALL Heart. She’s done all her racing in France where she was third in a Group 3 last season before leaving that form behind when fourth in a red-hot race at Longchamp latest.
She goes further than 1m2f for the first time but shapes like a stayer and trainer David Menuisier is under-rated which partly explains her attractive odds. More to come.
MAMAN JOON 1
JOON too soon. She didn’t race as a two-year-old and was almost ten lengths off the winner on debut in a Newbury maiden in April.
You would expect this daughter of Sea The Stars to improve a lot for that but moving into a Classic for her second start looks a tall order.
RED RIDING HOOD 1
IN the Red. She has done well in lesser races and was less than a length off the pace in a Naas Group 3 last time out.
That was over 1m2f and she doesn’t look guaranteed to relish this longer trip.
Has the look of a pacemaker for Savethelastdance and certainly has a lot to find on form.
RUNNING LION 4
LION heart. This Roaring Lion filly has improved with every run and relished stepping up to 1m2f when winning a Newmarket Listed contest in style.
At the time, Oisin Murphy was adamant she would be better in the French version of this race rather than stepping up another quarter-mile so stamina has to be a slight worry.
She tanks along and has lots of class so she’ll be right there if she does last home.
DANCE in step. She had a couple of runs as a juvenile before her blistering success in the Cheshire Oaks on comeback.
As soon as Ryan Moore asked for an effort, she took off and ending up winning by 22 lengths.
She wasn’t beating much but the time was excellent and looked every inch a Group 1 performance.
The ground was bottomless but she doesn’t need it soft on breeding and there’s likely to be some juice underfoot today after the watering.
Handling Chester’s turns bodes well for Epsom and she looks hard to beat.
SEA OF ROSES 2
ALL at Sea. Favourite columnist Andrew Balding’s filly won her maiden at Doncaster last season and kicked off this campaign with a solid Group 3 third in France before a modest effort at York last time.
She should be happier stepping up to this distance but looks short of Classic level on what we’ve seen so far.
SOUL SISTER 4
SWEET Soul. She is bidding to give Frankie a fairwell Oaks victory and has solid claims after her excellent Musidora win at York last time.
She picked up strongly off a modest pace and got the race won with plenty left in the tank.
She clocked a decent time, particularly in the closing stages and is well up to Oaks standard.
The Gosdens are confident she will see out the extra quarter-mile and this daughter of Frankel is the clear danger to the favourite.
Templegate’s Epsom Oaks tip
SAVETHELASTDANCE can waltz off with the Betfred Oaks.
She was sensational when winning the Cheshire Oaks by half the Roodee and can improve on just her fourth run.
Frankie’s fans will be cheering on Soul Sister who looks a big threat after showing lots of pace to take the Musidora at York.
She can figure along with Gosden stablemate Running Lion who is high-class but may just lack stamina.
Eternal Hope didn’t beat much in the Lingfield Trial but is a big price to hit the frame for the top team of Charlie Appleby and William Buick.
Templegate’s 1-2-3 Epsom Oaks prediction
2nd Soul Sister
3rd Eternal Hope