Weekend Review – Elm Park Win Causes Ripples
2015 Epsom Derby
Elm Park grabbed the headlines last weekend following a scintillating display in the Group 1 Racing Post Trophy – a performance that caused ripples in next year’s Classic betting.
While his odds of 16/1 for the 2,000 Guineas remain interesting, it was the move from 25/1 to 12/1 to for the Derby, which has really caught the imagination of punters.
Bred for middle-distances as a half-sister to a 1m4f winner, Elm Park gives the strong impression there will be even more to come when stretching his legs beyond a mile next season
, and where Saturday’s jockey, Andrea Atzeni, believes he will stay well. The fact this colt handles both fast ground and the mud also makes him attractive from an ante-post perspective – for the record, both Camelot and Authorized have won the Racing Post Trophy prior to Derby glory during the last eight years.
On the same card at Doncaster, Latenightrequest impressed in winning a 1m4f handicap by over 4l in the mud, and it will be interesting to see if Richard Fahey brings him back for the November Handicap over the same C&D in a fortnight’s time. The fact this was Latenightrequest’s first outing over 1m4f on soft suggests there should be more to come.
At Leopardstown, Jim Bolger’s, Parish Boy, won a Listed event over 1m1f, beating Ballydoyle’s, Order Of St George, for a second consecutive occasion. Bolger already views this New Approach colt as a Guineas type, for which he is now a 33/1 chance, the same price he is for the Derby.
Also at Leopardstown was the November Handicap where Willie Mullins demonstrated how well his strings are at present ahead of the jumps season by winning this race with Clondaw Warrior. This 7yo has improved on the level this season, winning three of his last five races, and now reverts to hurdling where he has already won. He has a reduced mark over hurdles and remains interesting for the winter with this improvement under his belt.
On the subject of the forthcoming jumps season, it was announced by Philip Hobbs that Fingal Bay – a Listed hurdles winner at Cheltenham in March – will go for Newbury’s Hennessy Gold Cup. Already a novice winner over fences, Hobbs thinks he could be attractively handicapped for the race, and it will be interesting to see what weight he gets – watch this space for the latest odds.
Hobbs was also amongst the winners at Chepstow last Saturday where his Sausalito Sunrise impressed in winning on his chase debut over 3m – a performance that surprisingly had Hobbs mentioning Cheltenham in March. Sausalito Sunrise must be rated by his trainer to be thought of as Festival material already, and a quote of 20/1 for the RSA Chase looks interesting.
On the same card, Nigel Twiston-Davies carried on his superb autumn form in winning the Grade 2 Persian War Novices’ Hurdle with Blaklion, who is now 4-4 over hurdles and goes for the Paddy Power meeting at Cheltenham next month, while Shelford won the Grade 3 Silver Trophy Handicap Hurdle for improving trainer, Dan Skelton, and could go for the Challow Hurdle at Newbury in December.
Finally, Ballydoyle won the Cox Plate Down Under with Adelaide, in the process laying down a marker for Ireland ahead of next week’s Melbourne Cup, where Johnny Murtagh sends 12/1 shot, Mutual Regard. Murtagh has enjoyed success all over the globe as a jockey, and he’ll be hoping Mutual Regard can put him on the map as a trainer around the world next Tuesday.