Home Classic next for impressive Saxon Warrior colt Borna after Derby Italiano success

Borna, pictured when he was part of the Haras des Capucines yearling draft at Arqana in 2022
Borna, pictured when he was part of the Haras des Capucines yearling draft at Arqana in 2022Credit: Zuzanna Lupa

Borna put himself on the route for a European Classic double after emerging an impressive winner of Sunday's Derby Italiano at the Capannelle in Rome.

Owners Darius Racing have been responsible for two German Derby scorers over the last decade in Sisfahan and his sire Isfahan and that will be the next target for a French-bred son of Saxon Warrior who was bought for €20,000 at the Arqana October Yearling Sale by Holger Faust's HFTB Agency.

Bred by Haras D'Ecouves out of a King's Best half-sister to very smart stayer Top Trip, the Markus Klug-trained Borna has been a regular visitor to Italy, finishing second in last year's Gran Criterium and winning a prep-run in Milan last month.

Jockey Andrasch Starke was cruising as the field turned for home and eventually looking round for dangers as his mount passed the line two and a half lengths clear of Andrew Balding and David Probert's British raider Royal Supremacy.

Speaking on the Capannelle YouTube broadcast, Starke said: "I’m very pleased to win this Derby, I had the opportunity to ride Danedream in it [in 2011], who finished third. I had eight in my country so it was the right day for me to win. 

"What a tremendous performance, he was looking around a little bit but he had the answer. I was quite impressed."

Faust, racing manager of Darius Racing, added: "I think he’s a very, very good horse. He has no problems with any ground and did a great job.

"His main target was to win the Derby Italiano here in Rome, that was our goal after he was second in the Grand Criterium. We’ll let him come home and obviously he'll go into the German Derby next."

Borna is a fifth Group winner for Saxon Warrior and is from the second crop of his sire, the Guineas hero standing at Coolmore Stud for €25,000.

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