Tamleek and “Bay” Godolphin hopes in Chester trials
As Derby trials go, Chester and Lingfield this week are pretty tame.
Next week's G2 Dante Stakes at York is the big one and will be the test that determines a pecking order in the run-up to the G1 Investec Derby at Epsom on June 3.
While Thursday's Chester Vase enjoys G3 status, both Friday's Dee Stakes and Saturday's Lingfield Derby Trial are Listed races these days. Nevertheless, they continue to uncover decent horses, and this year should be no exception.
Saeed bin Suroor supplies the Godolphin interest in Tamleek in the Vase, which has attracted eight runners, four of them trained at Ballydoyle.
Tamleek, a son of Hard Spun, won a Newmarket maiden over 10 furlongs on April 20 and looked a colt of considerable promise.
"I am looking for a good run from him," Saeed pointed out. "He's in good form and has worked well since his win last month.
"He's facing better horses this time, but I feel he has a good chance," he added.
The John Gosden-trained Cunco has had eight starts, winning two of them, including Sandown's Classic Trial on April 28, while highest-rated of the Ballydoyle contingent is The Anvil, who disappointed in the Racing Post Trophy last October but easily won a maiden at Dundalk on March 31.
Charlie Appleby is expecting Bay Of Poets to acquit himself well in the Listed Dee Stakes following his pleasing effort when third in Epsom's Blue Riband Classic Trial on April 26.
Cracksman won the race, while runner-up Permian has since franked the form by winning at Newmarket in good style.
"I was pleased with his first run," Appleby said. "He's come out of it very well, and at the present time, a mile and a quarter is his optimum trip. But I expect we will learn more about him in the Dee," he added.
Appleby sends Zamfir to the Listed Lingfield Derby Trial following the New Approach colt's win in a Leicester maiden, over one mile.
"I am looking for further improvement from him. I was pleased with his win and I think he will get better over a longer trip. The Leicester race has worked out well," the trainer added.
Saeed is contemplating sending Best Solution to Lingfield as well. "I think a mile and a half is the right trip for him. But we will see how things go," Saeed added.