Investec Derby 2011 

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epsom derby 2011/

By Billy Blakeman ValueChecker

Investec Epsom Derby Preview - Vadamar to Spring Surprise

Carlton House
© Racehorse Photos

Carlton House
CARLTON HOUSE – The ValueChecker selection Ante-Post and after winning the Dante, propelled himself to Derby favourite. Owned by the Queen which in a year when Royal interest has been renewed, has caught the imagination of the press.
Reason For – Has excellent credentials on racecourse evidence.
Reason Against – Had late injury scare and that a heavy concern.
ValueChecker Rating – 15/20


RECITAL – Deemed to have the mental immaturity that Montjeu seems to breed but done little wrong on the track, winning three of his four. Kieren Fallon famously takes the ride and looks to have real credentials.
Reason For – Has the form, pedigree and connections to win this.
Reason Against – Just the worry that attitude may not stand up to this unique challenge.
ValueChecker Rating – 16/20


POUR MOI – Notably good performance to win Group 2 in Native France last year and another bred to win a Derby. With Andre Fabre who doesn’t tilt at windmills.
Reason For – Unexposed and improving rapidly with each run.
Reason Against – Not sure that fast ground will be what he wants.
ValueChecker Rating – 12/20


SEVILLE – Ballydoyle second-string and firmly put in hgis place by Carlton House in the Dante at York. Not impossible he can find on that form and foolish to rule him out of this.
Reason For – Very strong juvenile form and may be able to improve on his comeback effort.
Reason Against – If Carlton House runs to form, more will be needed.
ValueChecker Rating – 14/20



Native Khan

Native Khan

NATIVE KHAN – Third to Frankel in the 2,000 Guineas which broke new heights for a top class juvenile. Abandoned by Kieren Fallon but not a forlorn prospect if staying this trip.
Reason For – Really game and strong individual who could take advantage of any quirks in his rivals.
Reason Against – Although he is bred to stay this trip well, he has yet to race beyond a mile in five races and so stamina to prove.
ValueChecker Rating– 15/20


OCEAN WAR – Godolphin representative who has won both his races this season at Newmarket.
Reason For – From powerful operation and must be thought capable of further progress.
Reason Against – Stepping up hugely in class and this track very different to Newmarket.
ValueChecker Rating – 9/20


VADAMAR – owned by the Aga Khan who only lets serious contenders take their chance on these shores. Beaten by Pour Moi last time but plenty think he can reverse that form and a lively outsider.
Reason For – Suspect he has more to offer and must have be pleasing connections at home.
Reason Against – Definite concern that fast ground will be against him
ValueChecker Rating – 15/20


MEMPHIS TENNESEE – Fourth in the Coolmore pecking order and firmly put in his place by stablemate Recital in his Derby Trial. Not without hope but doubts about his stamina on pedigree.
Reason For – Starting to struggle now.
Reason Against – Hasn’t looked good enough so far and stamina in doubt.
ValueChecker Rating – 7/20


MASKED MARVEL – Montjeu colt who is likely to stay well and is progressing but needs to fins a deal more to win this.
Reason For – Could be a steady improver
Reason Against – Doesn’t look to possess the class for this and could be more of a St Leger type.
ValueChecker Rating – 7/20


TREASURE BEACH – Another from Ballydoyle and certainly entitled to some respect given that he has improved notably on each start. There could be worse outsiders.
Reason For – Improving colt who is bred to run well in a Derby.
Reason Against – Not rated near to the top of the pile at home so will need to surprise Aidan O’Brien with something special.
ValueChecker Rating– 10/20


CONCLUSION – But for his injury scare, Carlton House would have been a confident selection but I can’t take the risk. Instead, I am going with VADAMAR to spring a surprise in what may not be a vintage Derby. Although the prevailent conditions are a bit of a concern, this French-trained colt may have slipped under the radar a little and the 20/1 looks more than generous. Native Khan and Treasure Beach are others who make each-way appeal.

Recommendation: Vadamar (Carlton House already advised)


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