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Inspiral's return date scheduled for the Lockinge

Multiple Group One winner Inspiral being lined up for first appearance of the season in Newbury's Lockinge Stakes on May 18; Chris Richardson, managing director of owners Cheveley Park Stud: "If she tells us she's not quite ready, then we can wait until the Queen Anne"

Inspiral and Frankie Dettori
Image: Inspiral is set to return in the Lockinge Stakes.

Inspiral is being prepared for a return in the Al Shaqab Lockinge Stakes as owners Cheveley Park Stud look to continue riding a crest of a wave with their all-star mare.

The multiple Group One-winning mare is being geared up for more Group success this season as her targets have been set - including the Al Shaqab Lockinge as a seasonal debut.

Inspiral, a daughter of Frankel trained by John and Thady Gosden, ensured she was a Group One winner for the third successive season when landing the Prix Jacques le Marois last summer.

Inspiral soon supplemented that impressive Deauville triumph with further top-level victories in the Sun Chariot Stakes and at the Breeders' Cup, prompting the decision to keep the leading mare in training at five with Newbury's one-mile event on May 18 an initial target.

However, if that high-class event comes too soon for the nine-time winner, then she will revert to plan B which, like 12 months ago, involves beginning her campaign at Royal Ascot in June.

"The Lockinge is the plan, but obviously she is a filly that likes to take her time to come in the spring as we've seen before," explained Chris Richardson, managing director of Cheveley Park Stud.

"Certainly the Lockinge looks the first engagement we can consider and if she tells us she's not quite ready, then we can wait until the Queen Anne.

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"She seems to be happy and well back in the yard and I watched her come up Warren Hill the other morning and she went up there nicely and quietly, so we will see how we go."

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Inspiral finished 2023 by successfully stepping up to 10 furlongs at Santa Anita when capturing the Breeders' Cup Filly & Mare Turf and although connections are keen to start the new season at a mile, options over further could be explored as the summer goes on.

"I think John is keen to start her off at a mile and then we can build over the campaign hopefully, all being well. We will definitely be considering going a mile and a quarter," continued Richardson.

"She's five now and a lovely filly who is still maturing and developing. She had a lovely break at the stud after America and they are a long time in the paddocks, so she is a mare we can really enjoy.

"She had a nice visit to us and was out in the paddock with her usual companions. She is always very inquisitive with her ears pricked, seeing who is coming round the corner next."

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