Article Date: 18-May-2012
Just 24 colts were left in the Investec Epsom Derby at today's (Friday) forfeit stage and the Epsom Oaks is down to 22 fillies.
The Derby entries are headed by the unbeaten Camelot, who is one of five remaining entries in the Group 1 contest for trainer Aidan O’Brien. Camelot was the impressive winner of the QIPCO 2000 Guineas at Newmarket on May 5th and, if successful at Epsom Downs, would become the 37th colt to complete the 2000 Guineas/Derby double and the first since Sea The Stars in 2009.
O’Brien, who is seeking a third Derby success following the victories of Galileo (2001) and High Chaparral (2002), could also be represented by Imperial Monarch, who was victorious in the Group 3 bet365 Classic Trial at Sandown Park on April 28.
O'Brien is also likely to run Astrology, who was the runaway 11-length winner of the Group 3 Dee Stakes at Chester on May 11, Father Of Science, an impressive maiden winner at Chester last week and Tower Rock, who was the neck runner-up in the Derrinstown Stud Derby Trial at Leopardstown last Sunday.
There is one other potential challenger from Ireland in the shape of the Jim Bolger-trained Parish Hall, who has not been seen out so far this season but was successful in the Group 1 Dubai Dewhurst Stakes at Newmarket last season.
The strongest rival to Camelot could prove to be yesterday’s Betfred Dante Stakes victor Bonfire (pictured). The son of Manduro was an impressive winner at York and represents owners Highclere Thoroughbred Racing (Pocahontas Syndicate) and trainer Andrew Balding. Winners of the Dante Stakes have an impressive record in the Investec Derby in recent years with Authorized (2007), Motivator (2005) and North Light (2004) having won both races.
Other horses going forward to have won recognised trials for the Investec Derby include Chester Vase scorer Mickdaam and the unbeaten Main Sequence, who recorded his fourth and most recent victory in the Betfred Derby Trial at Lingfield Park on May 12.
Pour Moi in 2011 became the first French-trained winner of the Investec Derby since Empery in 1976 and there is one potential starter from France this season in Kesampour. Trained by Mikel Delzangles for owner the Aga Khan, Kesampour is unbeaten in four outings and was successful in the Group 2 Prix Greffulhe at Saint-Cloud on May 5 last time out - the same race that Pour Moi won en route to Classic glory at Epsom Downs.
It was a slight surprise to see Kesampour left in the Derby as connections had indicated that the horse would run in the Prix du Jockey-Club instead.
Sir Henry Cecil, trainer of four winners of the Derby, has three potential challengers this time around headed by Frankel’s full-brother Noble Mission, a Listed winner at Newmarket last time out who is declared to run at the same venue in a similar contest again tomorrow, plus Wrotham Heath and Thomas Chippendale.
The five-day conformation stage for the Investec Derby is on Monday, May 28th, when there is also one final chance for connections to enter horses via the £75,000 supplementary entry stage.
New favourite for the Oaks with most firms is The Fugue. John Gosden's filly finished a fine fourth on her seasonal reappearance in the QIPCO 1000 Guineas at Newmarket on May 6 and seemed to relish the step up in trip when an eye-catching winner of the Group 2 Tattersalls Musidora Stakes over an extended 10 furlongs at York this week.
Maybe, the second favourite in most lists, was undefeated as a juvenile, including in the Group 1 Moyglare Stud Stakes. She is one of six remaining entries for trainer Aidan O’Brien along with Cheshire Oaks runner-up Betterbetterbetter, Devotion, recent Listed scorer Kissed, Musidora Stakes runner-up Twirl and Was.
In addition to holding an excellent chance in the Derby with Bonfire, the Pocahontas Syndicate of Highclere Thoroughbred Racing also has a leading Oaks contender in Vow, who was an impressive winner of the Betfred Oaks Trial at Lingfield last Saturday, when she was three and a quarter lengths too strong for Colima. She is trained by William Haggas, successful in the Investec Oaks 12 months ago with Dancing Rain, who was his first runner in the Classic.
Alain de Royer Dupre supplies the one remaining French-trained contender in the shape of the Aga Khan’s Dalkala. The Giant’s Causeway filly is unbeaten in three outings, most recently recording an impressive victory at Saint-Cloud last Monday.
The six-day confirmation stage for the Oaks is on Saturday, May 26 when there is also a £20,000 supplementary entry stage.
LATEST GOING AND WEATHER
Andrew Cooper, Director of Racing at Epsom Downs, said today: “If we were racing today, I would say the going description would be good, good to soft in places. The ground is a bit dead, slightly on the slow side of good
“The last appreciable amount of rain we received was on Tuesday and it has been dry since then. The outlook remains for conditions to stay dry although temperatures will remain on the cool side for the time of year.
THE 2012 INVESTEC DERBY
Class 1, Group 1, £1,325,000 Total Prize Fund, 4.00pm, Epsom Downs, Saturday, June 2, 2012. For three-year-olds only, entire colts & fillies, one mile, four furlongs and 10 yards. Entries closed December 7, 2010 (478 entries). First scratchings deadline noon, March 6, 2012 (143 remained), £8,000 secondary entry stage noon, April 3, 2012 (5 second entries received), second scratchings deadline noon, May 18, 2012 (24 remain), £75,000 supplementary entry & five-day confirmation stage, noon, May 28, 2012, final declaration stage 10am, May 31, 2012. Form figures supplied by Weatherbys and are correct up to and including the racing of Thursday, May 17, 2012. May not include some overseas form.
Form Horse Owner Trainer
0- AL MAMZAR (IRE) Abdulla Ahmad Al Shaikh David Simcock
133-1 ASTROLOGY (IRE) Derrick Smith Aidan O'Brien IRE
13-1 BONFIRE Highclere Thoroughbred Racing-Pocahontas Andrew Balding
11-1 CAMELOT Derrick Smith, Sue Magnier, Michael Tabor Aidan O'Brien IRE
4-3 CARDINAL WALTER (IRE) Fitri Hay David Simcock
33211-(3) CAVALEIRO (IRE) Guy Brook Marcus Tregoning
2115- FARHAAN (USA) Hamdan Al Maktoum John Dunlop
51 FATHER OF SCIENCE (IRE) Sue Magnier, Michael Tabor, Derrick Smith Aidan O'Brien IRE
1-1 IMPERIAL MONARCH (IRE) Sue Magnier, Michael Tabor, Derrick Smith Aidan O'Brien IRE
11-11 KESAMPOUR (FR) H H Aga Khan Mikel Delzangles FR
11-1(1) MAIN SEQUENCE (USA) Niarchos Family David Lanigan
11- MANDAEAN Godolphin Mahmood Al Zarooni
12 MARINER'S CROSS (IRE) Godolphin Mahmood Al Zarooni
301-(6)(2)(1)(4)21 MICKDAAM (IRE) Sheikh Mohammed bin Khalifa Al Maktoum Richard Fahey
215 MINIMISE RISK Fitri Hay Andrew Balding
2-11 NOBLE MISSION Khalid Abdulla Sir Henry Cecil
12021- PARISH HALL (IRE) Jackie Bolger Jim Bolger IRE
12-6 PERENNIAL Khalid Abdulla Charlie Hills
51- RUGGED CROSS Thomas Barr Henry Candy
01- THOMAS CHIPPENDALE (IRE) Sir Robert Ogden Sir Henry Cecil
1-2 THOUGHT WORTHY (USA) George Strawbridge John Gosden
613-32TOWERROCK (IRE)Sue Magnier Aidan O'Brien IRE
03-0 VENEGAZZU (IRE) Eledy Srl Peter Chapple-Hyam
01-2 WROTHAM HEATH Khalid Abdulla Sir Henry Cecil
24 entries remain after May 18 scratchings deadline
THE 2012 INVESTEC OAKS
Class 1, Group 1, £350,000 Total Prize Fund.4.05pm, Epsom Downs, Friday, June 1, 2012. For three-year-old fillies only. One mile & four furlongs. Weights: 9st each. Entries closed March 13, entries revealed March 15 (95 entries). Scratchings deadline noon, May 18 (22 remain). £20,000 supplementary entry stage and six-day confirmation stage May 26, final declaration stage 10.00am, May 30. Form figures supplied by Weatherbys and include the racing up to and including Thursday, March 17.
Form Horse Owner Trainer
(2)10- ALBAMARA Kirsten Rausing Sir Mark Prescott Bt
(4)1205-(5)30ARSAADI (IRE) Sultan Ali William Haggas
2(1)2 BETTERBETTERBETTER (IRE) Roisin Henry & Sue Magnier Aidan O'Brien IRE
1-(2) COLIMA (IRE) Mr and Mrs David Aykroyd Ralph Beckett
(4)(1)1- COQUET Hon Mary Morrison & Partners Hughie Morrison
1-11 DALKALA (USA) S A Aga Khan Alain de Royer Dupre FR
00146-(3)2 DEVOTION (IRE) Michael Tabor, Derrick Smith & Sue Magnier Aidan O'Brien IRE
246-24 EVERLONG C G P Wyatt Peter Chapple-Hyam
213- FIRDAWS (USA) Hamdan Al Maktoum Roger Varian
312-2 HAZEL LAVERY (IRE) R Morecombe, E O'Leary, R Scarborough Charlie Hills
1-1 KISSED (IRE) Derrick Smith, Sue Magnier, Michael Tabor Aidan O'Brien IRE
1-3 LACILY (USA) Godolphin Mahmood Al Zarooni
11111-3 MAYBE (IRE) Michael Tabor, Derrick Smith & Sue Magnier Aidan O'Brien IRE
4-1 MORANT BAY (IRE) Noel Martin Sir Henry Cecil
024331-20 NAYARRA (IRE) Prince A A Faisal Mick Channon
PINK DAMSEL (IRE) Fitri Hay Roger Varian
21- SHIROCCO STAR Helena Springfield Ltd Hughie Morrison
1-41 THE FUGUE Lord Lloyd-Webber John Gosden
54- TOPTEMPO Roalco Limited Mark Tompkins
31-22 TWIRL (IRE) Derrick Smith, Sue Magnier, Michael Tabor Aidan O'Brien IRE
1(1) VOW Highclere Thoroughbred Racing-Pocahontas William Haggas
1-3 WAS (IRE) Derrick Smith, Sue Magnier, Michael Tabor Aidan O'Brien IRE
22 entries remain after May 18 scratchings deadline
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