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Matt Chapman: Derby talk ramps up – and why that’s massive for Richard Kingscote

, Matt Chapman: Derby talk ramps up – and why that’s massive for Richard Kingscote

SEIZE the moment. That’s what they say isn’t it? Certainly jockey Richard Kingscote will be thinking like that this week.

Kingscote is on the Derby plunge horse Desert Crown in Thursday’s Al Basti Equiworld Dubai Dante Stakes at York.

Kingscote knows his big chance to shine could come in next month’s Derby

Much has been made about this horse possibly being the one to put Sir Michael Stoute back in the big time.

But Desert Crown being a star is perhaps even more important for the Classic-winning and talented Kingscote.

The rider effectively picks up scraps from Sir Michael Stoute when Ryan Moore is not available.

That was Kingscote’s choice when he left Manor House Stables, then the home of Tom Dascombe, in the hope a good horse might pop up.

Now, with Moore set to ride for Ballydoyle in the Dante, Kingscote’s chance arrives.

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This is massive for the jockey, because the chances of a classy equine beast coming along for him are so much less than let’s say for James Doyle, who landed the 2000 Guineas for Godolphin on Coroebus as Charlie Appleby’s second rider.

I wish Kingscote all the best. His skills are there for all to see. Seize the moment Richard.

Of course to be able to do that Desert Crown has to be good enough.

Desert Crown is owned by Saeed Suhail, who had his blue and yellow colours carried to victory in the 2003 Derby by Kris Kin, described by his Stoute as one of the laziest horses he had handled.

Desert Crown also, it appears, has not done an awful a lot at home.

Perhaps that’s why when he won first time up at Nottingham in early November he was odds of 11-1.

The Stoute two-year-olds are not known for being ready to win on their debuts and he was one of only three such winners in 2021, one of the others was sent off at 25-1.

Desert Crown could hardly have made a better impression, travelling fluently close to the pace and then storming clear when Kingscote produced him to lead a furlong out to win by five and a half lengths from Schmilsson.

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Desert Crown won in a time more than two seconds quicker than the scorer of the other division of the maiden.

Breeding suggests the Derby mile and a half will be no issue. Desert Crown is a half-brother to four winners who, despite all being by the same sire – Archipenko – have won over a variety of trips, including the year-older Cu Chulainn, successful at 11 furlongs last season.

His lightly-raced dam won at a mile but with Nathaniel as his sire stamina shouldn’t be a worry for Desert Crown at three

Speaking of the Derby, were you impressed by any of the four Aidan O’Brien Classic trial winners over the last week?

Whether the answer is yes or no, it appears ‘the lads’ might well have fancied all of them judged by much-ignored betting patterns!

Yesterday, Stone Age propelled himself to Derby favourite when backed from evens to 10-11 before landing the Derby Trial Stakes at Leopardstown.

Then, on Saturday United Nations was supported from 11-4 into 9-4 against 11-10f Walk of Stars in the Lingfield equivalent.

Last week Changingoftheguard was 4-1 into 100-30 in the Chester Vase even though there was a 4-11f in New London. And while Sea of India went from 11-8 to 6-4 in the Dee Stakes he was hardly a massive drifter.

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Know the time of day those lads.

Soon they might just be thinking Luxembourg who?

Rather than sweating over the side-lined former ante-post Derby market leader.




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