Battle Of Marengo: one of Aidan O'Brien's team to be confirmed for EpsomPICTURE: Getty Images
Bolger bullish about Approach's Derby bid
JIM BOLGER has revealed Investec Derby favourite Dawn Approach has been thriving since winning the Qipco 2,000 Guineas earlier this month.
On a day when the home challenge for Epsom weakened with Telescope ruled out of the race, Bolger said he “would not be losing any sleep over who turns up” to tackle his colt on June 1.
Bolger, who won the Derby in 2008 with Dawn Approach’s sire New Approach, said: “He has come out of the Guineas very well and his performance in the Guineas was spectacular. I couldn’t be happier with the horse and I have no doubt he is improving.”
Following Telescope’s withdrawal, Dawn Approach is a best-priced 10-11 although Boylesports seemingly have no concerns about the step up in trip as they go as short as 8-11.
Bolger added: “If you were to take it at face value he probably wouldn’t get a mile and a half but he settles so well and has such a good temperament he may well get a mile and a half but we won’t know until we try it.
“Hopefully there will be plenty of pace as we need that to get him to settle and we’d be disappointed if we don’t get it. After that may the best horse win.”
Strength to Ireland’s Derby challenge will be added by Aidan O’Brien, though the Ballydoyle maestro has yet to decide on the final make-up of his squad.
The plan is to run both Battle Of Marengo and Mars with final decisions on the participation of his other five entries remaining fluid.
“It is all up in the air at the moment,” he said. “They have all had a good year so far which is the important thing.”
A mixed forecast is expected to remain in the build-up to the two-day Derby meeting, which starts on May 31.
Epsom clerk of the course Andrew Cooper said on Thursday: "If we were racing today, I would call the ground good and I'm pleased with where we are.
"I'd be very pleased to start the meeting on ground like this. The intention is not to run the Derby on anything quicker than good to firm.
"We could have some showers today then rain tomorrow and there is a mixed forecast next week. At the moment, it is looking like it should be mainly dry with possible sunny spells and temperatures of 16-17C."