Breeders' Cup winner Audarya could return at Royal Ascot

Breeders’ Cup heroine Audarya is likely to make a high-profile return next month, despite having to miss her intended comeback at either Saint-Cloud or Sandown this week.

Trainer James Fanshawe was intending to take his mare to France on Wednesday for the Group Two Prix Corrida, and she also had Thursday’s Brigadier Gerard Stakes as a possible alternative.

Fanshawe decided against either option, though, after noticing Audarya was not quite on top form at home last weekend.

He said: “She’s fine. She was just a bit quiet at the weekend, and it’s a long trip to France, so that’s why we decided not to go.”

Audarya was both a Group One and Grade One winner as she improved dramatically through a brilliant international campaign last year, which she completed with a famous success in the Breeders’ Cup Filly & Mare Turf at Keeneland in November.

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Both the Prince of Wales’s Stakes at Royal Ascot and the Pretty Polly Stakes at the Curragh, the latter against her fellow fillies and mares, remain under consideration for her next month.

“The Prince of Wales’s would be a tough question to ask her first time out,” added Fanshawe.

“But I’m sure she’ll tell us. There’s the Pretty Polly 10 days later, so there are various options – we’ll see how she is.”

Wherever the five-year-old returns, her Newmarket trainer anticipates it will not be long delayed.

“We decided to give her a bit more time,” he added.

“It’s just looking at her – she was just not her usual bouncy self. So that’s why we haven’t gone this week.

“I was hoping to run her this week, and she’s not far from a race.”

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