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Matt Chapman exclusive: A cracking looking bird and some Epsom Derby clues at York

Thursday is Dante Day on the Knavesmire and I've got my eye on a promising filly.

by Matt Chapman | May 14, 2014

The ground may only just be on the easy side for the second day of York so the idea you want animals who want bottomless ground is wide of the mark.

Arguably everyone was put away yesterday with the description. It may not be that soft on the Knavesmire but we’ll try to dampen Paddy’s profits with a few winners on Dante day.

You hear me Paddy?

We kick off with a 5f sprint handicap where  Kieren Fallon and Godolphin should go well with DESERT LAW (1.45pm).

The selection has raced mainly on fast ground in his career – but has performed well on faster ground. He’s fit and has the class to be competitive off a mark of 100.

Next up is the Group 2 Middleton Stakes over an extended 1m2f and  THISTLE BIRD (2.15pm) really should take all the beating.

She likes the ground, stays well and has gone close in two Group 1’s out of her last three starts. Could be a big win for Frankie Dettori (above).


Trial and hopefully no error

The Derby Trial is the Dante Stakes and all eyes will be on Kieren Fallon and Godolphin’s TRUE STORY (2.45pm) who should bolt in on official ratings.

He may well win the Derby itself after an impressive win at Newmarket. Connections don’t want the ground too soft, but he is out of a Darshaan mare so should be able to cope. He’s 11/2 with Paddy Power for the Derby now but if he wins the Dante on Thursday, he’ll be shorter.

Finally we’ve the Hambleton Stakes Handicap over a mile and it might be worth taking a chance each-way with NAVAJO CHIEF (3.15pm).

His trainer Alan Jarvis hands the licence over to his son soon so will want a couple of winners.  The ‘Chief’ hasn’t run well recently, but likes this track, soft ground and could be worth the risk.


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