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Vodafone Derby: Authorized in pole position
by Geir Stabell ( / Globeform (
Last update: 2007-06-01 03:42:39 (First published: 2007-05-28 03:03:46 )

Epsom Downs 2 June: The field for the premier classic in Europe is taking shape, and the Vodafone Derby (G1) looks like getting an interesting field - possibly with eight runners from Ballydoyle.

Authorized, who produced an impressive Globeform 116++ when winning the Dante Stakes (G2) at York, heads the ratings, and he will be very hard to beat. Still, Aidan O’Brien’s top rated contender, the Derrinstown Stud Derby Trial (G2) winner Archipenko, is not far off the favourite on our figures. Both these colts are at an early stage of their careers, as is the Lingfield Derby Trial (G3) winner Aqaleem.


Epsom Downs 2 June 2007 – 1 ½ miles turf

Horses presented with best
Globeform ratings, sires, riders.

A ‘+’ after horse indicates improvement expected.

116 – AUTHORIZED (Montjeu) ++ / L Dettori
113 – ARCHIPENKO (Kingmambo) ++ / M Kinane
113 – STRATEGIC PRINCE (Dansili) + / E Ahern
112 – EAGLE MOUNTAIN (Rock Of Gibraltar) + / J Murtagh
111 – LUCARNO (Dynaformer) ++ / S Drowne
111 – ADMIRALOFTHEFLEET (Danehill) + / J Heffernan
111 – YELLOWSTONE (Rock Of Gibraltar) / C O’Donoghue
109 – AQALEEM (Sinndar) + / R Hills
108 – SALFORD MILL (Peintre Celebre) + / T Durcan
108 – PETARA BAY (Peintre Celebre) + / D O’Neill
108 – SOLDIER OF FORTUNE (Galileo) / W Lordan
107 – REGIME (Golan) + / M Dwyer
107 – ANTON CHEKOV (Montjeu) / D McDonough
106 – ACAPULCO (Galileo) + / F Berry
104 – ARABIAN GULF (Sadler’s Wells) / R Hughes
104 – EASTERN ANTHEM (Singspiel) K McEvoy
101 – KID MAMBO (Lemon Drop Kid) / J Fanning
100 – MAHLER (Galileo) + / P Smullen
…? – LEANDER (Kalanisi) / M Gallagher

AUTHORIZED was deeply impressive as he won the Dante Stakes (G2) over 10.5 furlongs at York in May. It has only his third lifetime start, it was his seasonal debut, and he produced a high class performance (and rating) without having to be extended. He beat Raincoat (who goes for the French Derby) very easily by 4 lengths, with Al Shemali third and Adiago fourth. These may not be genuine Group One performers, at least not as yet, but Adagio had won the Craven Stakes (G3) and Raincoat was coming off a smooth win in the Blue Riband Trial Stakes at Epsom. Raincoat was staying on late but he was never running for better than second. Authorized, racing with great zest throughout, and cantering up to take the lead approaching the furlong marker, and he outclassed his five rivals.

That was the best trial performance seen this spring and Authorized is virtually guaranteed to improve again. He will be tough to beat. Prior to his seasonal debut, he had a racecourse gallop at Newmarket, completing 7 furlongs in company with the classy sprinter Al Qasi. Authorized was made to work that day, and blew much harder than his workmate after the job.

Last year, he won the Racing Post Trophy (G1) over a mile at Newbury (where he had been third in a good maiden on his debut). Taking the mile event in good style, by 1 ¼ lengths from Charlie Farnbarns, he looked an exciting prospect already that day. The way he won the Dante suggests that he will leave his juvenile form way behind this year. And why should he not. He only ran twice in his first season, and became one of the few names to break his maiden in Group One company.

ARCHIPENKO entered the Derby picture with a nice win over stable companion Yellowstone in the Derrinstsown Stud Derby Trial (G2) over 10 furlongs at Leopardstown. Starting at 8-1, and ridden by Kinane, he came through with a solid run from just off the pace, to lead entering the last furlong. Yellowstone ran on at the end but Archipenko was by far the best and won by ¾ length. Macarthur was third and Mores Wells fourth. The last named had won the Ballysax Stakes (G3) on his pervious start, when Macarthur was third – in front of the high class miler Creachadoir. Yellowstone, who ran like a horse who will appreciate 1 ½ miles, had been well beaten behind Creachadoir in April, and in between these two runs he was beaten just under seven lengths when 11th to Cockney Rebel in the 2000 Guineas (G1). Cockney Rebel has since added the Irish equivalent, and three horses that finished behind Yellowstone at Newmarket have come back and won good races.

That said, Archipenko is the one that makes most appeal of the two as a Derby horse, and he could well prove to be a threat to Authorized. He was a maiden winner in his third and final start at two, and was making his seasonal debut in the Derby Trial. Most of O’Brien’s horses have improved greatly from their first to second start and if Archipenko does the same he will run a big race. He was a very late foal (May 30) and there is another reason to expect a lot of improvement this year.

STRATEGIC PRINCE is a solid performer who was among our favourite juveniles last year, when he ran third behind Teofilo and Holy Roman Emperor in the Dewhurst, after having landed a pair of valuable Group races earlier in the season. He ran a respectable race to finish eighth in the 2000 Guineas (G1) – his first start of the year – and he will probably be better over further than a mile. He was beaten just 4 ¾ lengths behind Cockney Rebel at Newmarket, and that run gives him a nice profile pointing to Epsom – but has he got much scope for improvement this year? Perhaps not.

EAGLE MOUNTAIN was not very impressive in the paddock when making his seasonal debut in the 2000 Guineas (G1) at Newmarket but ran a respectable race to finish fifth behind Cockney Rebel, who won the Irish 2000 Guineas (G1) next time out. Eagle Mountain has been a bit of a ‘talking horse’ ever since running storming home by 7 lengths in a weak edition of the Beresford Stakes (G2) last year. He was well beaten behind Authorized in the racing Post Trophy (G1) and we have seen nothing since to suggest he can turn that form around. Quite the opposite.

ADMIRALOFTHEFLEET makes more appeal and he could well be the best of the Ballydoyle team. Perhaps Archipenko is more talented but Admiralofthefleet is much more experienced, and he was quite impressive when landing the 10-furlong Dee Stakes (G3) at Chester in May. Running on really strongly, after having travelled sweetly throughout and handled the turns well, he beat Desert Dew by 2 lengths while conceding 5lbs. The form is solid but not brilliant, but this colts has quite a few plus points on his sheet. He took the Royal Lodge Stakes (G2) over a mile at Ascot last year, beating Medicine Path by 2 ½ lengths. Despite his more speed biased pedigree, Admiralofthefleet looks a horse who will appreciate 12 furlongs, and at around 20-1 he is a good each-way alternative.

LUCARNO is an intriguing runner. This very attractive son of Dynaformer caught the eye I the paddock at Newmarket last weekend, and confirmed the impression out on the track – where he outclassed a decent field and produced Globeform 111+. That is a high rating for a horse with so little experience, and he should not be ruled out. He led from start to finish in the 10-furlong Fairway Stakes (LR) and ran on strongly to beat Supersonic Dave by 3 ½ lengths, with Hearthstead Maison 1 ¼ lengths further adrift in third. The last named had been beaten 4 lengths when second to Aqaleem at Lingfield on his previous start, while Supersonic Dave had won his only previous race (a ‘so-so’ maiden at Newmarket last year). Lucarno, who was unraced as a juvenile, is almost certainly a top class horse in the making – but does he have the experience needed here? His sire is an influence for stamina, but his dam was a sprinter. This does smell of 10 furlongs though don’t forget that he was ridden very much for stamina at Newmarket. He could surprise on Saturday.

YELLOWSTONE has been improving steadily and he ran quite a good race behind Archipenko in the Derrinstown Stud Derby Trial (G2), while the Lingfield Derby Trial (G3) winner AQALEEM is more of a rapid improver. He may not have beaten all that much in his trial but he was by far the best, and will improve again.

PETARA BAY could be worth a small each-way bet at a big price. He proved clearly the best when meeting SALFORD MILL at Newmarket and his subsequent run behind REGIME in the Sandown Classic Trial (G3) was too bad to be true. Reportedly, he had become upset on the way to the course, although it is a short trip. He is trained at Epsom, so one has none such worries this time. Regime came from well off the pace to beat Striving Storm by 2 lengths at Sandown. His runner-up that day would be 100-1 if lining up in the Derby and Regime must improve significantly to have a say in this classic.


for the favourite, and Frankie Dettori looks set for his first Derby win. In AUTHORIZED he has the perfect mount for this contest. The colt is well balanced, he travels well in his races, he has been handed a draw that should help him keep out of trouble through the first half mile, he will act on the ground and he will stay the distance. In all probability, he will win.

ARCHIPENKO - a very possible big improver – and his stable companion ADMIRALOFTHEFLEET - clearly stepping up on his decent juvenile form this year – both make appeal for forecast betting. As does LUCARNO - a very likely big improver – and a horse with a profile quite similar to Hala Bek, such an unlucky loser last year. AQALEEM, who actually finished in front of Authorized in a maiden event last year, quickened up well from off the pace at Lingfield and, though that was an uninspiring field, he must be considered a decent each-way shot.

Talking of possible improvers; there are quite a few of those in this field but don’t forget that Authorized has raced only three times and he will improve. He won’t be easy to beat.




7 Authorized


A: 7 with 6
B: 7 with 4
C: 7 with 2
D: 7 with 12


Authorized at 7-1
for the King George VI & Queen Elizabeth Diamond Stakes (Coral).

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