Breeders' Cup - At The Races

LADY AURELIA

Lady Aurelia
  • Trainer: Wesley Ward
  • Likely Jockey: Frankie Dettori
  • Owner: Stonestreet Stables Llc & Peter Leidel
  • Age & Breeding: 3-year-old filly; Scat Daddy – D'Wildcat Speed
  • Season Form Figures: 112
  • Career Highlight: Her jaw-dropping triumph in the 2016 Queen Mary Stakes.

Lady Aurelia’s career to date has been nothing short of amazing. She burst onto the worldwide racing scene with a huge win in the Queen Mary at the 2016 Royal Ascot meeting, and this year, as a three-year-old, she once again was the talk of the Royal meeting with a smashing win in the King’s Stand Stakes.

Her usual race gives her an excellent chance of adding a bold new feather in her cap: a win at the Breeders’ Cup. While Marsha might have gotten the best of her last time in the Nunthorpe – much to Frankie Dettori’s chagrin - that race did nothing to hurt her overall body of work. She went well clear that day, and did a little too much too soon, but was only beaten a nose against a legitimate Group 1 filly.

It seems likely at this point that five furlongs is her best distance so it’s good news for her that this year’s Breeders’ Cup is taking place over a sharp five at Del Mar, as opposed to the more galloping six-and-a-half furlong configuration at Santa Anita, which often plays more like a mile. She loves it firm and is undefeated around a bend, with both her maiden win on synthetic – where she ran a huge time figure – and her win in the Giant’s Causeway at Keeneland attesting to her proficiency in these regards.

Current prices have her around 11/8 but her typical race would make her more like an odds-on shot. Still, the good filly who just beat her will be a multiple of her price. The reason is simple: she’s proven under these conditions, which remain a question for Marsha, plus Lady A has never run a race as poor as Marsha’s last effort.

For all the success he’s had at Royal Ascot, Wesley Ward’s record at the Breeders’ Cup is comparatively modest, with a 29-2-4-7 record, but it’s not like he’s underperformed either. Both of his wins came in 2014, with Judy the Beauty in the in the Filly and Mare Sprint and Hootenanny in the Juvenile Turf. Lady Aurelia gives him an excellent chance to improve that mark.