Ladies Are Forever delivers summer special

Geoff Oldroyd forecasts a bright future for Ladies Are Forever after the capable filly won the Summer Stakes at York today.

Geoff Oldroyd forecasts a bright future for Ladies Are Forever after the capable filly won the Summer Stakes at York today.

Third in the Queen Mary at Royal Ascot as a juvenile, the Malton-based handler feared a season of hardship for his stable star, such are the demands placed on three-year-old sprinters in Britain.

But Oldroyd can rest easy, safe in the knowledge Ladies Are Forever has now embossed a Group Three triumph upon her curriculum vitae.

Owner Reg Bond's demeanour was also one of immense satisfaction as the Pocklington tyre mogul this year sponsored the six-year furlong feature on the Knavesmire.

Oldroyd said: "I'm thrilled for Reg - this means everything to him."

Although the defection of Swiss Diva, the likely favourite, may have aided her cause, this was a keynote victory for Ladies Are Forever.

Rose Blossom, last year's winner, ensured there was to be no hanging around as Tony Hamilton's mount predictably surged out of the stalls.

Richard Fahey's filly was still in front deep inside the final furlong, but was swamped by the William Haggas-trained Dever Dream and Ladies Are Forever.

An engaging duo then ensued, from which Oldroyd's 9-2 chance emerged the victor by a head, posting yet another winner on the board for Silvestre de Sousa.

Oldroyd added: "She's not been easy to place this year and I didn't think we would win a race with her this season.

"She's still unfurnished, and she'll be a better horse as a four-year-old, perhaps up to winning a Group Two.

"We'll give her a break and bring her back for one more race, but I don't know what yet.

"There's the possibility of going abroad, but I don't think that will be the right thing to do for her - it might knock her back a bit."

Michael Dods is also focussed on a profitable 2012 campaign for Rock Supreme who consolidated upon a pleasing debut at Redcar in the Cakemark EBF Maiden Stakes.

The Andrew Tinkler-owned juvenile (5-2 fav) went one place better than at the Tees Valley circuit with a head defeat of Godolphin newcomer Surfer.

Dods reported: "He stays well and will probably go in excess of a mile and a quarter, maybe a mile and a half.

"I see him as definitely being a horse for next year."

Punters' collective joy at the well-backed triumphs of Ladies Are Forever and Rock Supreme sadly evaporated once French Hollow claimed the Global Trading UK Responsible Packaging Stakes.

Only idealistic speculators snaffled up the odds of 66-1 which were available for Tim Fitzgerald's six-year-old, who was surprisingly good value for his three-and-three-quarter-length success over Bow To No One.

Fitzgerald, securing his first turf winner of the season, said: "We thought we'd take a punt and it paid off."

John Dunlop's gamble in sending Awsaal to Yorkshire then paid off with first prize in the Caravan Chairman's Charity Cup.

The Arundel handler had issued an advisory against running his unexposed colt if the ground had deteriorated by race-time.

Mother Nature stuck to her end of the bargain - but only until Awsaal (6-1) returned to the winner's enclosure, which coincided with the onset of a fierce thunderstorm.

Lashing rain was certainly no obstacle for Firebeam, who could not have won the Stakes with any more authority for the Haggas team under Eddie Ahern.

PJ McDonald, dumped on the ground from Margo Channing in the opener, at least left York with a smile on his face when Charlie Cool (2-1) pocketed the George and Pauline Blades Golden Wedding Stakes for trainer Ruth Carr.

Nomoreblondes (10-1) then ran amok for the Paul Midgley team in the concluding Warburtons, Bakers Born & Bred Apprentice Handicap.

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