Appley has Irish Derby hopeful
Charlie Appleby will seek to round off the most memorable month of his training career at the Dubai Duty Free Irish Derby on Saturday (5.15pm).
Already in June, Moulton Paddocks-based Appleby saddled Derby winner Masar at Epsom, before having two further winners at last week’s Royal Ascot.
One of those victors at the royal meeting was Old Persian, who after clinching glory in Friday’s Group 2 King Edward VII Stakes, is set to be aimed at the Curragh Classic.
Speaking after last week’s Ascot triumph, Appleby said: “We had a great team of two-year-olds last year.
“And I felt they all wintered well and came into the spring in great nick. This horse has done nothing but progress through the spring, and we felt this was the right race for him and that stepping up in trip would suit.
“We were confident and I told Will (Buick, jockey) to go forward with him, and if someone wanted to take the lead, then we would be delighted.
“I was so pleased half a mile out with the way he was travelling and once this horse hit the front I was confident he would see it out well given the pace they had gone.
“He had shown a turn of foot over a mile and a quarter so I knew what he could do.
“He is a typical son of Dubawi. He has improved from two to three and I’m sure he will progress from three to four.
“We wanted to mind him because we liked him and felt he had the scope to become a good horse.”
Godolphin last tasted success in the Irish Derby back in 2015 when the John Gosden-trained Jack Hobbs lived up to his billing as odds-on favourite.
Buick was in the saddle on that occasion and it is expected that he will also ride Old Persian, just as he did at Ascot.
The jockey said: “Charlie has always said that Old Persian wants a mile and a half and this was his first time over the trip.
“We hoped he would improve for it and he did.
“I wanted to make sure that stamina came into play, I wanted to be in a position that I could do something about it in the straight. As you could see his last furlong was his strongest so it is a very, very pleasing performance.”