Three-time Irish Champion jockey Colin Keane can use his Curragh knowledge to guide Westover to glory in Dubai Duty Free Irish Derby
- Connections of Westover will certainly be praying for an honest gallop
- Classy colt can utilise his stride at a track which should play to his strengths
- Decision to supplement Tuesday could prove a masterstroke by Aidan O’Brien
The decision to supplement Tuesday at the 11th hour for Saturday’s Dubai Duty Free Irish Derby could prove a masterstroke by Aidan O’Brien.
The bold decision to add the Oaks winner to the field looks a smart one if four Group One runs since the start of May don’t catch up with her.
With 900 top-level race victories including 14 Irish Derby wins on his c.v. it is safe to say Tuesday’s handler knows what it takes to land today’s Classic and, in the daughter of Galileo, he boasts a filly who displayed a brilliant turn of foot at Epsom.
Westover can employ his generous stride at a track which should play to his strengths
However, that change of gear, no matter how taking, was achieved off a very modest early gallop and it will be fascinating to see if this feature sets up the same way.
Connections of WESTOVER (Curragh, 3.45) will certainly be praying for an honest gallop, set by the likes of French Claim, so their classy colt can employ his generous stride at a track which should play to his strengths.
The contours and undulations of Epsom were never likely to suit an imposing model such as Westover, but he made the best of a poor draw and interference to emerge with huge credit behind an impressive winner in Desert Crown.
Sadly, regular rider Rob Hornby, who was on board Westover in the Derby, has been replaced by three-time Irish Champion jockey Colin Keane but his mount seems a straightforward and uncomplicated conveyance and the move, while unfortunate for the talented Hornby, looks a savvy one by connections. Keane’s Curragh knowledge will be an asset and Westover’s freshness may also be a vital factor given Tuesday has been kept busy since the beginning of last month.
Those looking to break apart the front two’s domination of the market include Derby refugee Piz Badile who is another that should find this track more to his liking.
Donnacha’s brother Joseph also saddles an interesting contender in Hannibal Barca, a snug winner of a Group Three over 10 furlongs at the Curragh last time. However, Westover looked a class act in the making at Epsom and can grasp the opportunity