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Ivanhowe new favourite for German Derby

Report: Germany, Sunday

Cologne: 178th Oppenheim-Union-Rennen, (Group 2) 1m3f, 3yo

THE German Derby, to be run at Hamburg on July 7, has a new favourite after Gestüt Schlenderhan's Ivanhowe (Wilhelm Giedt/Adrie de Vries) ran out a convincing winner of the main trial, the Union-Rennen at Cologne on Sunday.

It was a third winner in the last five years for Germany's best-known stud, all partnered by de Vries, but a first for their new trainer Giedt.

Andrea Atzeni set out to make the running on Noble Galileo, but there was considerable jockeying for position behind him, as de Vries was happy to hold up Ivanhowe in second last.

He made steady improvement in the straight on the outside, and when he hit the front a furlong and a half from home, the race was as good as over.

Ivanhowe galloped on stzrongly to win by two and a half lengths from Empoli (Peter Schiergen/Andrasch Starke), who stayed on stoutly but at one pace, with 30-1 shot Orsello, ridden by Schiergen's teenage son Dennnis, finishing fast for third place.

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There were several bubbles burst, notably that of the previously unbeaten Nuntius (Andreas Wöhler/ Eduardo Pedroza), who was well placed but failed to pick up, and Frankie Dettori's mount Night Wish, who dropped right out and finished last.

Dettori later explained that his mount had experienced breathing problems, but the German Derby now looks unlikely.

It was a messy race, but apart from the case of Night Wish, there were no obvious excuses for the beaten horses, and although some of them will certainly take Ivanhowe on again at Hamburg, there seems  no reason why they should reverse the form.

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