Derby Hero Adayar Eyes King George

Adayar enjoys a pick of grass with Jenna Davies | Hoycubed Photography

Godolphin homebred Adayar (Ire) (Frankel {Ire}), who won the G1 Cazoo Derby on Saturday, excited the race in good order and will target the G1 King George VI and Queen Elizabeth S. at Ascot on July 24. If he completes the double, he would be the first horse to do so since his grandsire Galileo (Ire) in 2001.

Trainer Charlie Appleby said, “He has come out of the race great. As you saw he went on the seawalker yesterday morning and he has been out for a jog this morning and has been turned out in the paddock and he has shown his wellness. All signs are good so far.

“Without rubber stamping anything the discussions that are taking place at the moment are that we will give this horse a bit more time and look towards going to a King George with him. I think timing-wise it suits him and also we will have tested our mettle a bit against the older horses.

“After that we can see what he is like against the older horses there and if he happens to win a King George we can work back from an Arc. If he gets beat in a King George then we revert back to our original plan which was going down the St Leger route.

“I think, personally, looking from the outside having won neither race, I would rather pinpoint one as we all know in the autumn it is a big ask to do a St Leger then an Arc.”

One of Godolphin and Appleby's other Derby runners, third-place finisher and G2 Al Basti Equiworld Dubai Dante S. victor Hurricane Lane (Ire) (Frankel {Ire}), will return sooner than his stablemate. The June 26 G1 Irish Derby has been pencilled in for the chestnut.

Appleby added, “I was delighted with Hurricane Lane. He was the horse I thought in the paddock looked magnificent and I thought he took the preliminaries very well.

“What did surprise me, but we took it as a positive, is that he is very much learning on the job there. He showed his inexperience. Going into the Derby I thought he was one run short of what I would have liked to seen.

“He came off the bridle a bit earlier than I expected but his class got himself back into a position that he would be in the mix at the right end.  I'm delighted with how he has come out of it and the plan with Hurricane Lane is to head straight to Ireland.”

Rounding out the trio of Godolphin Derby starters was G3 Autumn S. winner One Ruler (Ire) (Dubawi {Ire}). The colt ran sixth on Saturday, and is a possible starter for the 1 1/4-mile G3 Hampton Court S. at Royal Ascot on June 17.

He said, “We will drop him back to 10 furlongs. James [Doyle] said he didn't handle the track particularly well but he didn't see it out either. We might look at something like the Hampton Court, we will see what his wellbeing is like.

“He would carry a penalty in that from his G3 Autumn S. success but we could look at something like that or wait for an [G1 Coral-] Eclipse [at Sandown on July 3].”

Plans Revealed For Other Classic Colts
Mohaafeth (Ire) (Frankel {GB}), who was scratched on the morning of the Blue Riband due to the ground, is also resurfacing in the Hampton Court. He also has an entry in the June 18 G2 King Edward VII S. at Royal Ascot, but Shadwell Racing Manager Angus Gold indicated that the Hampton Court was more likely.

Gold said, “It's most likely he'll run in the mile-and-a-quarter race, I would think. There is quite a body of opinion around the horse that thinks he might end up a mile-and-a-quarter horse.

“We weren't sure about the mile and a half going into the Derby. I've noticed his breeder has been quoted twice now, saying she doesn't think he'd stay–and he has got a lot of speed, this horse. Maybe it will turn out a mile and a quarter is his best trip–time will tell.”

Derby runner-up Mojo Star (Ire) (Sea The Stars {Ire}) will most likely start next in the Irish Derby. The Amo Racing Limited runner has three runner-up performances to show from three starts, and he was only 4 1/2 lengths off of Adayar at Epsom on Saturday.

“He's absolutely fine–and we're looking for the next Derby, I suppose,” trainer Richard Hannon told the Nick Luck Daily Podcast on Monday morning. “It's not an easy feat, but I'm not sure we've anything to gain by winning a novice or a maiden–and quite often these sort of horses get turned over at long odds-on in those sort of races.

“I think we'll be looking at something like an Irish Derby or a King George, maybe. If you finish in the first three in the English Derby, you get a free go at the Irish Derby, so that's got to be worth looking at.

“We've never had a horse finish that close in a Derby before. They're extremely hard to find, these sort of horses, and you've got to keep hold of them and keep them racing as long as you can. I said to Kia Joorabchian–who owns the horse–before the Derby that next year's his year. He's always looked like a horse that, when he's four, he could be something a little bit different.”

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