A scintillating 2,000 Guineas performance by Dawn Approach has seen the colt’s price slashed to 2/1 to win the Derby on June 1st.
Trainer Jim Bolger has said that a trip to Epsom is the more likely option for his unbeaten charge as opposed to the Irish 2,000 Guineas, and in the wake of the five-length victory sought to allay concerns over the three-year-old’s ability to make a mile and a half.
It is worth noting that Dawn Approach’s sire, New Approach, won the 2,000 Guineas before going on to taste victory in the Derby. Kevin Manning was on board for that triumph, and has piloted Dawn Approach throughout his career to date.
The Newmarket triumph was a seventh win for the Godolphin-owned three-year-old and the manner of the score really caught the eye. Much was made in the build up of Toronado’s claim, but the 2/1 shot wilted in the face of the champion’s challenge with a furlong to go, finishing outside the places.
Aidan O’Brien’s three-year-old Battle of Marengo – the favourite before the Guineas yesterday – is also yet to attempt the Derby trip, but went well over 10f when winning the Ballysax Stakes on heavy ground last month. He has now won four of his five races, and is a 4/1 shot for Epsom.
The Ballydoyle yard has produced eight Derby winners, while O’Brien himself has lead three to victory, including last year’s winner Camelot.
The Irish trainer is also expected to run Kingsbarns in the 233rd renewal, whose 2,000 Guineas hopes were curtailed by a foot infection. He is currently rated at 10/1 after impressing in two races as a juvenile last year, the second a Group One win in the Racing Post Trophy at Doncaster in October.
Sir Michael Stoute is the most successful Derby trainer still at work, with five triumphs in total. Owing largely to his breeding, Telescope has been the ante-post favourite for the Derby. He is the progeny of Galileo, the 2011 Derby winner, but has yet to prove himself having yet to beat top class opposition in his two outings to date. The 5/1 shot’s season has been delayed, and until tested at a higher level remains a huge gamble.
All Odds and Markets are correct as of the date of publishing