Bluestocking drops in class for Chester feature

Bluestocking will bid to get off the mark for the season in the tote Stand Cup at Chester on Saturday.

Ralph Beckett’s filly created a deep impression when winning on debut at Salisbury last autumn and is yet to finish outside the first four having been set some stiff assignments this term.

She has been a model of consistency, but has continually bumped into on-song rivals from Aidan O’Brien’s powerhouse Ballydoyle stable, finishing closely behind Warm Heart on three occasions and agonisingly denied by the staying on Savethelastdance in the Irish Oaks.

Connections are now determined to reward Bluestocking’s endeavours this term with the victory she deserves and she drops to Listed level for her visit to the Roodee.

“She’s been a great filly this year and has run some remarkable races,” said Barry Mahon, European racing manager for owners Juddmonte.

“We just sat down and said after York (Yorkshire Oaks) that it would be an awful pity if we didn’t win this year considering some of the races she has run.

“So we decided to aim our sights a little bit lower and the Chester race looks a nice opportunity.

“The ground will be on the soft side which is ideal and we would be hopeful of making her a Stakes winner this year.

“The race fits in timewise for something like the Fillies And Mares on Champions Day (Ascot, October 21) if she is in good form.”

Bluestocking is the star name among seven runners declared for Chester’s Saturday feature, with Sea Of Roses attempting to give Andrew Balding back-to-back victories and Roger Varian’s Modaara also of note judged on the best of her form.

Meanwhile, Karl Burke’s Al Qareem was last seen running in the Dubai Gold Cup and the Group Two winner now returns from 175 days off the track.

“We’re running him over a mile and a half because we’re expecting him to be fresh,” said Nick Bradley, managing director of owners Nick Bradley Racing.

“He loves to bowl along in front, Chester is a bit of a front-runners track and it looks the right ground for him there. All of Karl’s improve for the run but they are happy with him at home.

“We’ve not put him in any of the Group Ones – he’s not in on Arc weekend or Champions Day. We are considering aiming him at Good Friday and going for those conditions races over the winter on the all-weather. But we’re going to start off here and take things from there.”

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