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Appleby adamant Derby winner Masar has not lost star quality

Masar: the 2018 Derby hero returned to action at Royal Ascot last month
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Charlie Appleby remains positive last year's Derby winner Masar can bounce back to form on the track despite a disappointing run when finishing last in Thursday's Princess of Wales's Tattersalls Stakes at Newmarket.

Masar's future will be discussed this week but there was no mistaking Appleby's wish to get him back on track after coming through his latest run unscathed. 

"No-one is going to change my mind at all," said Appleby on Saturday. "Does he still hold the ability? Yes. The main thing is he's pulled up sound and we can discuss it this week."

After last year's Derby success, Masar suffered a leg injury that kept him off the course for more than a year. He finished fifth in the Hardwicke Stakes at Royal Ascot on his return and Appleby was confident he had him spot on before Thursday's race.

"He owes us nothing and gave us a fantastic day last year but, on the flip side of that, his work last week was so good that we came into this meeting very confident we would hopefully get him back on to a winning track," said the trainer.

"I'm not one to make excuses but we got trapped out wide and ran too free and it would be lovely to see him have another crack at it in a race where he can get himself into a rhythm."

He added: "He jogged yesterday and today and is perfectly sound, and a discussion will go on over the next week before we make a decision on his future."

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His work last week was so good that we came into this meeting very confident that we would hopefully get back onto a winning track
E.W. Terms