Two well-bred three-year-old fillies with good reputations justified favouritism to break their maidens at Newbury on Thursday afternoon.
STYLISTIQUE was rated 106 following six runs as a two-year-old, including a half length defeat in the G2 Rockfel Stakes at Newmarket, but remained a maiden following her juvenile campaign. She was well supported to break her maiden on this occasion and did the business under Andrea Atzeni, although John Gosden's African Dream pushed her all the way to the line with the pair drawing four lengths clear of the third. She is a talented filly and is sure to come on for her seasonal debut, so we look forward to campaigning her in more black type contests through the year.
An hour later, GOLD WAND, was under similar pressure to produce the goods in the 1m2f fillies' maiden and, although she was a little on her toes in the preliminaries and ran a bit fresh, her class told in the end and she prevailed by 1½l from the beautifully bred Portrush with the pair stretching 4¼l clear of the third. Gold Wand made a very good impression on her only start last season when she was beaten a neck in a mile maiden at Doncaster and she has developed into a lovely filly this spring, so it was pleasing to see her get her head in front and we look forward to targeting some nicer prizes as the season progresses.