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Surprise Musidora winner Nausha leaves ante-post punters scratching their heads

That's more like a traditional Classic trial. After a week of unusually decisive verdicts and obvious plans, confusion has returned.

The Tattersalls Musidora Stakes is a key stepping stone to the Investec Oaks with six York winners going on to strike at Epsom, but what the latest running means for the Oaks picture is anyone's guess.

Just a neck separated the first three home, who had run just five times between them previously and are each open to any amount of improvement. One of the beaten fillies is quoted at a shorter price for the Oaks than the winner. And there is a fair chance that all three will bypass Epsom.

None of which is to take anything away from 14-1 shot Nausha, who bounced back from an abortive effort to make her a Classic miler to prove that she is a smart filly at this 1m2f trip.

After she had held on gamely to score by a neck under Andrea Atzeni in the colours of Nurlan Bizakov, trainer Roger Varian said: "I was really delighted with that performance and delighted for the owner, who is such an enthusiast, putting an awful lot into the game. He's been very patient and this filly has come good for him today.

"If she hadn't run at Kempton we would have really fancied her today because we loved her last year. She won her only start and we dipped our toe in over a mile to see if she might be a Guineas filly of some description.

"In hindsight, I don't think she'd come to herself – she raced too fresh and it was a non-event. We put a line through it and trained her for one of the Oaks trials. She's been training nicely at home and John Lowe, who rides her at home, never lost faith."

But a best price of 20-1 for Epsom reflects the doubts over her participation.

"She'll probably be left in tomorrow and we'll see how she comes out the race and consider all options," Varian said. "She's also in the Diane over ten furlongs in France.

"The question will have to be whether we think it's best to stay at ten [furlongs] or go up to 1m4f. They are two nice races to consider and she deserves her chance in one of them after today."

Derby-winning owner Anthony Oppenheimer has never won the Oaks but is not sure to aim at the race with Frankellina, who is a shorter price than the winner in some lists after dead-heating for second on her first run of the season.

"She's done enough to earn a place at Epsom but there may be other places she could go," he said. "I don't think we can make a decision, we have no idea what the ground's going to be like at Epsom or at Ascot.

"She seemed to run out of puff and we knew she was going to do that because she hasn't had any exercise for a bit. She'll be better next time out, she's a nice filly."

Inexperience appeared to tell on joint runner-up Entitle, who looks unlikely to bid to emulate Oaks-winning half-sister Enable.

"Entitle was very green and was on and off the bridle," said trainer John Gosden. "She will have learned a lot from that. We'll probably take her to the Ribblesdale."

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