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Kingston Hill set for Epsom Derby
10:47am Friday 11th April 2014 in Sport
RACING POST Trophy winner Kingston Hill is among 15 second entries for the Investec Derby at Epsom on June 7.
Connections of the Roger Varian-trained colt have stumped up £8,000 to add the Doncaster Group One victor to the premier Classic, for which there are now 133 possibles.
The Richard Hannon-trained Bunker has been given the Derby option, after having shown fair form as a youngster with second place in the Chesham Stakes at Royal Ascot and a success in the Listed Prix Francois Boutin over seven furlongs at Deauville.
Harry Herbert, racing manager for owners Al Shaqab Racing, said: ‘‘The Investec Derby is the aim for Bunker at this stage.
‘‘He has done very well physically through the winter and we were very pleased with him when he had a spin around Lingfield before racing on Saturday.
‘‘His form from last year is rock-solid and anyone who saw him wandering around the paddock at Lingfield would have been pretty impressed with him physically.
‘‘He will start off in a Derby trial, most probably the Dante (York, May 15) providing Richard Hannon is happy with him, and then we will see where we stand after that. Obviously if that went well, the Investec Derby would be the next stop but it’s a big path to cross first.
‘‘I think he is very likely to stay a mile and a half. You never really know until you try them, but he is the right type of horse in that he has a great stride on him and his sire line would very much indicate that he will stay.
‘‘There are plenty of ticks in the right boxes and the most exciting thing is how he has progressed physically, which is key.’’ Hannon has also made a second entry for Night Of Thunder, who is set to reappear in the Aon Greenham Stakes at Newbury on Saturday.
As expected, UAE Derby winner Toast Of New York was added to the Epsom list by trainer Jamie Osborne.
There are three French-trained second entries – Diaghan, Ectot and Norse Prize.
The only Irish-trained second entry is Fascinating Rock.
Dermot Weld’s charge could run in the Group Three Ballysax Stakes at Navan on Saturday.
The other second entries are Postponed, Raven Ridge, Mark Johnston’s duo of Hartnell and Somewhat, Scotland, declared to run at Newbury today, Red Galileo and Sir Jack Layden.
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