Can Found become the seventh filly to win the Investec Derby?
The Coolmore team have not ruled out Found taking on the boys in the Investec Derby at Epsom on Saturday, June 6th, and Coral make her a 16/1 chance to become just the seventh filly to win the 1m 4f classic contest.
Six fillies have won the Derby, with the most recent being Fifinella in 1916, who also won the Oaks. The other five were Eleanor (1801), Blink Bonny (1857), Shotover (1882), Signorinetta (1908), Tagalie (1912).
The last filly to run in the race was English 1000 Guineas winner Cape Verdi in 1998, who was sent off the 11/4 favourite but could only finish ninth.
That shows the tough task that fillies have in the race, but with a number of Aidan O’Brien trained prospects falling by the wayside the Coolmore team are contemplating a bold move to supplement the Irish 1000 Guineas runner-up for the famous race.
Kevin Buckley, Coolmore’s British representative, said: “Undoubtedly, the Investec Derby is the most important race to the team and, given that things are bit uncertain this year, we are exploring all options.
“Found is going to come to Epsom, subject to everything being OK after the weekend. She will come here for the Oaks or possibly, somewhat unusually, we may consider a supplementary entry for the Derby.
“We don’t have a horse in the top three or four of the betting for the Derby and therefore it has to be looked at, while we have good representation in the Oaks. It is not definite, rather something to explore. It is a long time since a filly won the Derby (1916). The principal owners are sportsmen.”
Found was a top class juvenile, and lost little in defeat on her latest start when a 1/2 length runner-up to Pleascach in the Irish 1000 Guineas at the Curragh after conceding first run to the winner before closing all the way to the line.
That race was over a mile, and the beautifully bred daughter of Galileo is bred to come into her own over middle distances.
Her presence in the Derby would certainly add spice to the contest, and O’Brien knows what is required to win the race having been successful on five previous occasions.
The Ballydoyle handler has also won the last three renewals, and if Found is allowed to take her chance I can see her running a huge race despite the stats being heavily against her.
Two definite Investec Derby runners for the Coolmore partners are Hans Holbein (12/1) and Kilimanjaro (20/1), who won the Chester Vase and Lingfield Derby Trial respectively.
Buckley said: “I was very taken by Hans Holbein’s performance at Chester, especially the way he handled the track. We knew he would stay the trip . He proved that and went away nicely in emphatic style. Ryan was really pleased with him and he is by Montjeu who has already sired four Derby winners here. He is a big price and I am sure he will give a good account of himself.”