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  • John Gosden Opens Up On Coronation Cup Plan For Defending Champion Emily Upjohn

John Gosden opens up on Coronation Cup plan for defending champion Emily Upjohn

Emily Upjohn is being readied for a return to Epsom and a defence of her Coronation Cup crown.

A narrowly beaten runner-up in the 2022 Oaks, John and Thady Gosden’s top-class mare went one better over the same course and distance last term when comfortably accounting for Westover in the hands of Frankie Dettori.

The daughter of Sea The Stars went on to push Paddington close in the Coral-Eclipse at Sandown before failing to fire in the King George at Ascot three weeks later and did not run again until finishing fifth behind Rebel’s Romance in the Dubai Sheema Classic at Meydan in late March.

With that run under her belt, the five-year-old can be expected to be at concert pitch when she lines up at Epsom once more on May 31.

“Emily Upjohn is in top form and we’re aiming at the Coronation Cup at Epsom,” said John Gosden. “The Coronation is the plan and that is where she will run next.”

The Clarehaven handler is less certain regarding the next assignment for stable stalwart Lord North, who having finished well beaten in his bid for a fourth win in the Dubai Turf, proved he is not done with just yet when third in Friday’s bet365 Mile at Sandown.

“We’ll see where we go with him, but he’s in good form and enjoying his racing,” Gosden added.

“He had to run in the Winter Derby over a furlong too far at a mile and three at Southwell and the ground was very fast in Dubai, which isn’t entirely his cup of tea now, but he ran great on Friday.

“He loves his training at home and William (Buick) said he loved his racing at Sandown, so we will keep ticking along.”

Beeley could be set for a sharp rise in class after filling the runner-up spot in a novice event at Sandown on Friday, with Gosden prepared to test her mettle in the Weatherbys Digital Solutions Cheshire Oaks.

The Duke Of Devonshire-owned daughter of Camelot was beaten a nose on debut at Nottingham last autumn, with the form of that performance boosted by both the winner and 1000 Guineas-bound third Rolica.

Beeley was withdrawn after unseating her rider and galloping loose both when returned to Nottingham for her intended second start and at Newbury for a slated reappearance earlier this month, but consented to jump off at Sandown and confirmed she has plenty of ability by finishing best of the rest behind her well-regarded stablemate Siyola.

Regarding plans for Beeley, Gosden said: “I’m going to go straight to the Cheshire Oaks with her now if she’s in good form. She needs a trip and she needs racing.

“We had her met at the start straight away (at Sandown) and we had a little coupling that we clipped on before the antics started and she was very good.

“She was mounted in the stalls and she had an opinion on that. She’s a very opinionated, charming filly to be around, but she keeps you on your toes and she’s certainly had us on our toes this year.”

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