Nahanni completes three-timer in Listed Blue Riband Trial
Nahanni put himself firmly in the Derby picture with a battling success in the Listed Blue Riband Trial at Epsom Downs, UK, on Tuesday, 19 April.
The Frankel colt was making his first appearance over 10 furlongs following two wins over a mile and a half for Charlie Appleby, including a nine-length victory at Leicester on 1 April.
After breaking slowly, Nahanni improved to lead after a furlong and set even fractions under William Buick. The duo lifted the tempo passing three-furlong marker but were soon challenged strongly on either side by Mighty Ulysses and Grand Alliance.
Having looked briefly in trouble approaching the final furlong, Nahanni found plenty as the runners hit the rising ground and stayed on best to prevail by half a length from Grand Alliance.
Charlie Appleby said: “I am pleased with that effort today. We were very much having a feel of where we were with this horse.
“We know he gets the trip as he has won his last two starts over a mile and a half prior to today.
“He has now ticked the box of handling the track so the likelihood is we will now probably head straight to the Derby with him.”
William Buick said: “It was a nice performance and Nahanni has come on again. He was back down in trip from Leicester but he handled the track well. The drop back wasn’t a concern.
“He got on the front and was very comfortable up there. I liked his performance as he saw them all off and handled the track, which is key. He is a horse that stays very well.
“Every time something came to him, he went again. At the top of the straight, I thought it was going to Frankie [that I had to beat] but he had to fight all the others off after that and he did.
“I thought he handled it well and there are no complaints there. It was the most competitive race he has ever encountered and he had to fight for it, so he has learnt plenty.”