Wolferton Stakes preview: Magic Wand looks just the trick in Royal Ascot opening day finalePublished on: June 17, 2019Author: David Metcalf
In the Listed 1m 2f Wolferton Stakes that closes a superb six-race card at Royal Ascot on Tuesday (17:35), Magic Wand looks worth siding with at 9/2 with Coral to take advantage of a drop in class and resume winning ways.
This Aidan O’Brien trained four-year-old filly could not have been more impressive at this meeting 12 months ago when landing the Group 2 Ribblesdale Stakes in runaway style.
After racing up with the pace, the daughter of Galileo was produced by jockey Ryan Moore to take up the running at the two furlong marker.
It was then a case of picking a time to push the button, and when he did the response was immediate as Magic Wand quickened smartly to forge clear and slam Wild Illusion by four lengths.
She won with tons in hand over a rival that had previously run well to finish runner-up in the Epsom Oaks. To win a race like the Ribblesdale in such a manner was sensational.
Magic Wand went on to finish a cracking head second to Kietsruf in the Group 1 Prix Vermeille at Longchamp, and also ran very well there when a length runner-up to Wild Illusion in the Group 1 Prix de l’Opera.
The daughter of Galileo has had three runs this year and ran very well in the first of those in America when chasing home Bricks And Mortar in the Grade 1 Pegasus Invitational at Gulfstream.
Magic Wand was also beaten just three-quarters of a length last time out in the Grade 1 Man O’War at Belmont and this represents a return to much calmer waters.
It looks the easiest task she has faced for some time, so Magic Wand simply had to be the main pick in this Wolferton Stakes preview.
Classic winner Latrobe feared most
Given that he is a Classic winner and also now drops in grade, fellow Irish raider Latrobe looks a massive player for in-form trainer Joseph O’Brien.
That Group 1 success came in the Irish Derby at The Curragh where the son of Camelot raced up with the pace before staying on in game fashion to get the better of Rostropovich by three-quarters of a length.
He had 2000 Guineas winner Saxon Warrior a neck further behind in third, and the likes of smart performers Old Persian and Dee Ex Bee well held in sixth and seventh respectively.
Latrobe showed a really willing attitude to get the job done and it was a fine effort on just his fifth career start.
The four-year-old went on to finish runner-up to Flag Of Honour in the 1m 6f Irish St Leger at the same venue and has shaped well in two starts this season.
After looking ring rusty when a nine-length third to Magical in a Group 3 at Naas, Latrobe got much closer to that rival in the Group 2 Mooresbridge Stakes at The Curragh last month when keeping on to be beaten just two lengths.
With those spins under his belt Latrobe should now be spot on to do himself justice in this lower grade affair under Donnacha O’Brien, who has won twice and been placed four times on him in seven starts.
At 9/1 with Betway, he looks a solid each-way betting proposition.
Addeybb another with claims
Addeybb shaped with promise on seasonal reappearance and is a fascinating contender now fitted with cheepieces for the first time.
Trained by the in-form William Haggas, who is operating at a strike rate of just under 28 per cent in the last 14 days at the time of writing, this five-year-old could not have been more impressive when landing last year’s Lincoln Handicap at Doncaster by 2 3/4 lengths from Lord Glitters.
He then took the step up into Group 2 company in his stride when showing a tremendous turn of foot to impressively beat Stormy Antarctic by 2 3/4 lengths in a Group 2 at Sandown.
That form commands Addeybb the utmost respect in this and there was lots to like about his return to action at Chester last month when fourth of six to Forest Ranger in the Group 2 Huxley Stakes over the 1m 2f trip of this.
After being held-up at the rear of the field by jockey James Doyle, the son of Pivotal got pushed along and was unable to quicken immediately when the tempo was increased two from home.
He then stayed on nicely under a tender ride to be nearest at the finish and beaten just under three lengths.
Addeybb shaped as if ring rusty and looks sure to come on a bundle for the outing. He also raced a bit lazily, so the fitting of the new headgear to sharpen him up looks a shrewd move.
He is also a course winner who handles the forecast ground, so has more going for him than most in a wide-open renewal and can be backed at 7/1 with 888Sport.
Elarqam worth taking on
Elarqam, who is one of the market principals at 9/2 with Unibet, is a talented but quirky sort who has failed to live up to expectations but did score in good style last time out.
This Mark Johnston trained colt was a very promising juvenile who looked set for a terrific season as a three-year-old when a cracking 2 1/4 lengths fourth of 14 to Saxon Warrior in the 2000 Guineas at Newmarket.
However, he then bombed out in his next two starts, finishing a well-beaten sixth of 11 to Romanised in the Irish 2000 Guineas and finish only third to Thundering Blue in a Group 2 at York.
Although beaten just three-quarters of a length in the latter, Elarqam was allowed to dominate and held every chance until being unable to find any extra close home.
It was an underwhelming effort, given that he was rated 13lb higher than the winner and 20lb superior to the runner-up Brorocco.
Elarqam also ran below par when fourth in a Listed contest at Salisbury, but his two runs this season have shown that he does retain plenty of ability.
After finishing a promising fourth of 10 to Zabeel Prince in a Group 3 at Newmarket, he took advantage of a drop in class when striding clear to land a Listed 1m 2f affair at Goodwood by 2 1/2 lengths.
The big question now is whether Elarqam can back up that effort, as his profile suggest he is far from certain to do so. On that basis, he looks worth taking on.