Home' Trinidad and Tobago Guardian : May 6th 2016 Contents A53
Friday, May 6, 2016 www.guardian.co.tt Guardian
Viren s Army wont be a surprise if he
causes one in the group three Dee Stakes
over an extended ten furlongs of Chester
this afternoon, when an eight-strong field
offers an outstanding each-way opportu-
nity; my sincere and abiding hope is that
all eight run and Richard Hannon s charge
is given the chance to make one of three
placings and confirm the time-handicap
which has been rewarding readers these
last few weeks.
Twice in the last couple of days with-
drawals in dead eight races have scuppered
our best laid plans.
Obviously if there is a withdrawal our bet
will be to win only but Viren s Army has
the edge over several fancied, high-profile,
rivals judged on a career-best TH mark
achieved in handicap company last month;
fitness wont be at issue and that means a
lot this season with so many floundering
due to months of bad weather, which has
made life difficult getting thoroughbreds
tuned up to satisfaction.
Pointless trolling through others, this is
all about whether Hannon has unearthed
a potential Epsom Derby prospect and two
Aidan O Brien challengers will surely provide
a test and barometer.
It s a difficult final day of the May meeting
and so attention elsewhere focuses on three
meetings, Ascot, Nottingham and Lingfield
where Michael Bell-trained School Fete is
another gilt-edged place prospect in the
opening Maiden Stakes over twelve furlongs
Originally the two-day(s) Derby trial
fixture was set for turf but this particular
day has been switched to all-weather even
though tomorrow part of the course will be
raceable on grass. I ll be previewing it.
School Fete comes out clear best-in and
though our record selecting Ding Dong
Bell s runners over the years leaves quite a
lot to be desired this one looks too good to
General Alexander is a long time winning
but he s given one last chance to recoup
losses (ours!) in the Maiden Stakes over six
furlongs of good to soft Ripon under inex-
perienced stable apprentice Barry Robin-
Brian Ellison wouldn t be taking risks on
a sub-standard prospect. Napped, each-
Our angle continues to be each-way
whenever possible for the daily patent bet.
They build them up and they knock
them down and they are invariably hard
Beautifully bred, along with every other
equine guest at Ballydoyle, US Army Ranger
was favourite for the Investec Derby on the
back of a three quarter length victory in a
Curragh maiden on his racecourse debut.
He stepped up on that form to win the
Group Three MBNA Chester Vase but was
pushed out to a top price of 6/1 for Epsom
despite getting the job done.
Hype, or expectation if you prefer, is very
difficult to live up to but Aidan O Brien
wouldn t be cowed in the post-race interview
and was adamant that his colt had done all
that was asked of him.
The runner-up, Port Douglas, is a good
horse, he argued, whose form stacks up bar
a below par run in the Racing Post Trophy
on very bad ground which didn t suit him.
"You have to be very happy with them
when they ve pulled that far clear of the
rest," he said.
"The best thing about him (US Army
Ranger) today was his high cruising speed
early; looking at him early I would have said
that he d have preferred the pace to be a
It would be easy to think that US Army
Ranger was given the pace connections
wanted given that stablemate Port Douglas
made the running but that may not have
been the case.
O Brien revealed that they had been toying
with fitting the second with blinkers - as
opposed to his usual cheekpieces - but
didn t want to do so for the first time around
the tight turns of Chester. Rider Seamie
Heffernan also reported that Port Douglas
had raced lazily and the field were tightly
grouped until two furlongs from home.
It was put to O Brien that US Army
Ranger would need to take a big step for-
wards to win at Epsom but that suggestion
was firmly batted away.
"That s a very hard thing to say because
if you look at the trials every year you don t
know where the form is going to come out
and if someone told you that they d pull
seven lengths clear of the Sandown horses,
around this place first time, you couldn t
say I wouldn t take that.
"Am I seeing that wrong? Maybe I am.
"Everyone has an opinion and everyone
is entitled to an opinion but I would have
to say that I was happy with both horses."
The trainer is not for turning.
High Grounds, one of the Sandown horses
in question, had finished nine and a half
lengths behind new Derby favourite Midterm
that day yet he was beaten 19 lengths here
while Dwight D was beaten seven lengths
further than he had been by Midterm in
Both refused to settle which is likely to
have contributed to their heavy beatings
but it hardly suggests that the winner s per-
formance wasn t on a par with that of
Midterm, a general 7/2 chance.
Timeform s Chief Correspondent Jamie
Lynch believes that the best is still to come
from US Army Ranger.
"It s fair to call his Chester win under-
whelming, failing to produce the explosion
his reputation had predicted, but at the
same time his effort has to be put into career
context, only the second start of his life,
and for nine-tenths of the race he looked
every inch a Derby horse, well-balanced
around the tight turns and looking to find
things coming easily to him," he said.
"The fact he was short on end product
on the day might be down to immaturity
as much as anything else, and the suspicion
is there s still a bigger performance in him."
Lynch did qualify that view though as
well as raising the tantalising prospect that
the best Ballydoyle contender this year may
not even be a colt.
"However, in ratings terms, he ll have to
do a lot more in little time to win a Derby,
only four weeks away, with his main market
rival Midterm aiming to raise the bar in his
trial in the Dante next week.
Gold thriving after
Hugo Palmer reports Galileo Gold to have
come out of his victory in the Qipco 2000
Guineas at Newmarket on Saturday in
Although a decision has yet to be made as to
which route the son of Paco Boy will go with
both the Tattersalls Irish 2000 Guineas and
Investec Derby under consideration, the
Newmarket handler believes his charge to be in
top order following his Classic triumph on the
He said: "I've never seen a horse take a race so
well. He only lost two kilograms. Ten kilograms is
normal, while 20 kilograms you start to say that
they have had a hard race.
"He barely turned a hair, broke sweat or blew
after the race. He just stood there admiring his
"He has eaten everything since. He has had a
few little canters and Toby (Atkinson) who rides
him out said can we do a little bit more with
While the victory was a landmark
achievement for Palmer in claiming a first British
Classic winner, it was one he feels has helped
calm any early season nerves.
So Di Mar
among York entry
So Mi Dar and Pretty Perfect head a strong-look-
ing entry of 17 for the Tattersalls Musidora Stakes
at York on Wednesday.
Trained by John Gosden, So Mi Dar is beautifully
bred as a daughter of Dubawi and top-class race-
mare Dar Re Mi and impressed in beating the colts
in the Derby Trial at Epsom last month.
Pretty Perfect looked smart in winning the
Salsabil Stakes at Navan and is one of five possibles
for Aidan O'Brien.
Promising Run is an interesting one stepping up in
tip for Saeed bin Suroor, on the back of a good juve-
nile campaign and twice finishing second to the
high-class Polar River at the Dubai Carnival.
Mark Johnston's Fireglow represents Classic form,
having been fourth to the O'Brien-trained Minding in
the Qipco 1000 Guineas.
Chief supporting contest on the first day of the
Dante meeting is the Duke of York Clipper Logistics
Headline act among the 15 confirmations is the
Henry Candy-trained Haydock Sprint Cup winner
Richard Fahey has left in July Cup third Eastern
Impact, with Charlie Hills calling on the progressive
Storm set for
Richard Hannon's Ventura Storm will take on the
might of Ballydoyle in Leopardstown's Derrinstown
Stud Derby Trial on Sunday.
Impressive on his seasonal return in the Feilden
Stakes at Newmarket, connections are keen to see
just how far he can progress.
Earlier in the week Aidan O'Brien suggested Idaho,
runner-up in the Ballysax Stakes, was likely to be
among his team.
Tim Palin, racing manager for owners Middleham
Park Racing said: "We'll go to Leopardstown and
take on the might of Ballydoyle.
"We could have taken him to France this weekend
but that looks like being a very hot race.
"Instead we'll take on the likes of Aidan O'Brien,
Jim Bolger and Dermot Weld - it's a very exciting
Go to School Fete
9.30 School Fete
10.40 Viren's Army
4.30 General Alexander
O'Brien's Hype Army beats a retreat
Under: (Last Friday)
10.30 am 6-2
1 pm 33-2
4 pm 9-23
6.30 pm 19-9
PICK TWO SELECTIONS
7, 13, 17, 18, 19
Times played this year
10.30am 1pm 4pm 6.30pmTotal
02 OLD LADY
04 DEAD MAN
05PARSONMAN 2 3 3 2 10
15SICKWOMAN3 1 6 4 14
18WATERBOAT 2 7 4 1 14
10.30am 1pm 4pm 6.30pmTotal
27 LITTLESNAKE 3 5 3 1 12
28 RED FISH
29OPIUMMAN 0 0 6 7 13
30HOUSECAT 8 3 2 2 15
31PARSONWIFE6 2 1 2 11
34BLINDMAN 2 2 2 2
35 BIG SNAKE
LAST DRAW: THURSDAY
WHEN DE MARK BUSS Play Whe results to Thursday, May 5, 2016
10.30 am 1
26 6.30 pm
18 (Water Boat) 6.30 pm
11 (Corbeau) 10.30 am
33 (Spider) 4 pm
15 (Sick Woman) 1 pm
TODAY'S STAR BETS
29 (Opium Man)
31 (Parson Man)
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