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Aidan O'Brien looking for Wand to weave her Magic at Chester
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Aidan O'Brien looking for Wand to weave her Magic at Chester
on 08 May 2018
Aidan O'Brien-trained Magic Wand will be ridden by Ryan Moore in the Arkle Finance Cheshire Oaks at Chester on Wednesday and hopes to shed her maiden tag

Aidan O’Brien is hoping Magic Wand can shed her maiden tag in the Arkle Finance Cheshire Oaks at Chester on Wednesday.

The Ballydoyle handler has saddled five of the last 10 winners of the listed contest and this year launches a three-pronged assault.

Ryan Moore has sided with Magic Wand, who is a half-sister to the 2013 Irish Oaks heroine Chicquita.

Connections of Chicquita following her victory in the Irish Oaks
Connections of Chicquita following her victory in the Irish Oaks (Adrian Melia/PA)
The three-year-old has not yet won after two attempts, but shaped with some promise when third on her seasonal debut at Leopardstown last month.

O’Brien said: “Magic Wand is a lovely filly and a sister to Chicquita.

“She’s had one run on bad ground this year and got a little bit tired.

“Rather than go back for a maiden now, we’ll let them step into those races as if they won their maiden and they can go back for a maiden any time.”

Donnacha O'Brien bidding for more big-race success after claiming the 2000 Guineas aboard Saxon Warrior at Newmarket on Saturday
Donnacha O’Brien bidding for more big-race success after winning the 2000 Guineas aboard Saxon Warrior at Newmarket on Saturday (Joe Giddens/PA)
The Ballydoyle maestro’s son Donnacha O’Brien partners another maiden in Forever Together, while Seamie Heffernan takes the ride on Dramatically, who won at Naas last year and steps up in trip after finishing down the field in the Nell Gwyn at Newmarket last month.

“Forever Together hasn’t run this year and is still a maiden as well, but she’s ready to go. We were waiting on the ground and obviously you can’t wait too long,” the trainer told At The Races.

“It will be a good experience for them and we’ll see how we go.

“We will all learn together.”

Trainer Gavin Cromwell is represented by Princess Yaiza
Trainer Gavin Cromwell is represented by Princess Yaiza (David Davies/PA)
There is a fourth Irish challenger in Gavin Cromwell’s Princess Yaiza, the mount of the track’s leading jockey Franny Norton.

The daughter of Casamento won twice on the all-weather at Dundalk during the winter and was last seen finishing third in the Listed Salsabil Stakes at Navan.

Cromwell said: “We’re very happy with her going there. Obviously we’re a bit disappointed with the draw (10 of 10), but if anyone can steer her round there, I think we’ve got the right man on board.

“I’ve never been to the races at Chester so I’m looking forward to it.”

John Gosden bids for a second successive Cheshire Oaks victory with Award Winning
John Gosden bids for a second successive Cheshire Oaks victory with Award Winning (Joe Giddens/PA)
John Gosden saddled the brilliant Enable to win this race 12 months ago and this year relies on the Coolmore-owned Award Winning, who won a minor event at Wetherby less than a fortnight ago.

Another leading contender for the home team is Nottingham maiden winner Kinaesthesia, trained by dual Epsom Oaks-winning handler Ralph Beckett, while Andrew Balding saddles the once raced Lingfield maiden winner Shailene.

Balding said: “She’s a filly we like a lot. We’re guessing a tiny bit.

“She goes very nicely at home. She lacks experience, but so do many of her competitors.

“We like her and she’ll come on.”

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