Magical Camelot lands the Derby for O’Brien family

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By Stuart Riley
Racing Post


Report: Epsom, Saturday

Investec Derby (Group 1) 1m4f, 3yo colts and fillies

AIDAN O’BRIEN continued his domination of the British Classics when Camelot surged clear of his rivals under the trainer’s Joseph to add the Investec Derby to his 2,000 Guineas success last month.

The victory, which makes trainer and rider the first father-and-son combination to win the Derby, was never in doubt as Camelot proved head and shoulders clear of his eight rivals in the smallest field since 1907.

The 8-13 winner came home five lengths clear of Main Sequence, a 9-1 chance, with the O’Brien-trained Astrology third at 13-2.

Joseph O’Brien said: “He didn’t handle the track so he did well to win today. He’s a very special horse and I’m fortunate to be on his back. I owe a big thanks to [owners] Mr and Mrs Magnier, Mr and Mrs Tabor and’Mr and Mrs Smith and everyone involved around’me.”

Derrick Smith, in whose colours Camelot was winning, said: “This is the one everyone wants in racing and I could never of dreamed I would do it – it’s just unbelievable.

“To win the Derby is a dream come true. What a horse. To be able to travel so easily in the early part of the race and come on the outside three furlongs to go – you could see from the three pole it was all over.”

Astrology, ridden by Ryan Moore, set a decent gallop in front, leading the field up the hill and around Tattenham Corner. With the smaller-than-normal field, there was not anything like the usual traffic problems sometimes associated with the Epsom Classic.

One notable moment came over two furlongs out, when Astrology had repelled the challenge of Thought Worthy and was several lengths clear of the field. Camelot, though, cruised into position picked him off.

In a matter of strides Camelot powered clear of his rivals to give O’Brien his third Derby triumph and fourth British Classic of the season.

No horse since Nijinsky in 1970 has completed the Triple Crown – the 2,000 Guineas, Derby and’St Leger – but Camelot could attempt it.

Smith added: “I suppose it must be on the agenda, mustn’t it? We may get pressurised into it but John [Magnier], Michael [Tabor] and I will sit down with Aidan and make the final decision.”

William Hill went 11-4 about an Arc victory and evens for the Triple Crown, while Boylesports went 1-3 about Camelot completing the Triple Crown.

View the original article at the Racing Post

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