epsom derby 2013/
Godolphin May be Counting on Number as Main Derby Contender
Although he appeared to have his limitations exposed when beaten for the first time at Meydan on his most recent outing, it could well transpire that from a host of entries into the Group 1 Investec Derby Godolphin’s Secret Number may prove to be the standard-bearer for the Dubaian team at the Epsom Derby.
The son of Raven’s Pass is reportedly held in high regard by trainer, Saeed bin Suroor, and connections have offered plausible excuses for the three-year-old’s first defeat which came at Meydan on World Cup night at the end of March in the Group 2 UAE Derby.
After missing the break, Silvestre de Sousa’s mount found the dawdle of a pace all against him and was caught flat-footed when the pace quickened. He eventually stayed-on nicely in the closing stages to finish a two-length third behind Lines of Battle and is believed far better than he was able to show on that occasion.
The winner of a Kempton maiden on Polytrack at Kempton last October, Secret Number spent the winter in Dubai and made a pleasing debut on Tapeta when cosily accounting for Zahee at the World Cup trials fixture on March 9, landing the listed Al Bastakiya with the minimum of fuss.
Simon Crisford, racing manager for Godolphin, has already suggested that the half-brother to the smart pair, Dubai Destination and Librettist, will take his chance at York on May 16 in the Group 2 Betfred Dante Stakes, a race in which he may test his abilities against the likes of current ante-post Derby favourite, Telescope, as well as any one or more of a host of entries from Ballydoyle.
If you accept the excuses given for his defeat in the UAE Derby, then at current ante-post odds of 25/1 with Betfair, Secret Number is arguably one of the best value horses in the market.