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Shoals Back In The Frame For Royal Ascot

Dual Group One winner Shoals may join the Australian contingent at Royal Ascot after a pleasing barrier trial at Cranbourne on Monday.

Shoals Back In The Frame For Royal Ascot

Dual Group One winner Shoals may join the Australian contingent at Royal Ascot after a pleasing barrier trial at Cranbourne on Monday.

The Anthony Freedman-trained Shoals Horseform had been under a cloud after suffering a setback after she won the G1 Surround Stakes over 1400m at Randwick in March.

Shoals wins the Surround Stakes
Shoals wins the Surround Stakes Picture:Steve Hart


The career of the valuable filly was reported to be in the balance after she suffered damage to a vein in her neck while receiving treatment the day after winning the Surround Stakes.

The issue ruled Shoals out of the Sydney carnival but she responded to treatment and Monday’s trial has her back on track to resume racing in Adelaide next month before a decision is made on a trip to the UK.

Freedman was pleased with her third in Monday’s trial over 990m and has confirmed she will attempt a first-up win in the $1 million Ubet Robert Sangster Classic over 1200m at Morphettville on Saturday week.

"She pulled up well so her fitness is not an issue,” Freedman reported.

“We'll go to the Sangster and use that race to decide whether we go to the Diamond Jubilee Stakes at Royal Ascot.

"She'd want to probably win to make that trip but first things first. We'll try our hand and base our decision on that."

Shoals also won the G1 Myer Classic over 1600m at Flemington last spring. Her record from only nine starts stands at six wins for earnings of more than $1.3 million.

The G1 Diamond Jubilee Stakes (1200m) will be run at Royal Ascot on June 23 and is set to draw other Australian G1 winners Redkirk Warrior and Merchant Navy.

The dual Newmarket Handicap winner Redkirk Warrior Horseform is set to be the first Golden Jubilee starter from the Lindsay Park stable while Merchant Navy Horseform is now in training with Aidan O’Brien in Ireland following his purchase from his Australian owners by Coolmore Stud.

While Shoals is set to race in Adelaide Freedman is focusing a big team on the Brisbane carnival, starting off with several runners at Doomben last Saturday.

However the Queensland weather will determine if Freedman pushes on with a Brisbane campaign for his highly-regarded Japanese import Ambitious Horseform, a last start eighth behind Winx in the G1 Queen Elizabeth Stakes (2000m) at Randwick after finishing second to Almandin Horseform in the G1 Tancred Stakes (2400m) at Rosehill.

Freedman is eyeing a start in the G1 Doomben Cup (2000m) on May 19 for Ambitious but is not keen to race him on affected tracks in Brisbane.

“He’s in Brisbane and the plan is to head towards the Doomben Cup but if we get wet tracks he won't run,” Freedman said.

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