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Page last updated at 10:44 GMT, Wednesday, 26 May 2010 11:44 UK

Workforce set to tackle Epsom Derby for Stoute

Investec Derby meeting, Epsom 4-5 June
Coverage: BBC TV, 5 live and BBC Sport website

Sir Michael Stoute, trainer of Workforce
Sir Michael Stoute has won the Derby four times

Workforce's chances of running in the Derby have improved significantly after an impressive gallop at Lingfield.

Sir Michael Stoute wanted to see how the colt handled the slope, which is similar to Epsom's and afterwards he said he was very satisfied.

Workforce is a 10-1 shot behind a string of Aidan O'Brien-trained horses, headed by St Nicholas Abbey.

Meanwhile, Tom Queally has chosen to ride the Henry Cecil-trained Aviate in the Epsom Oaks rather than Timepiece.

Champion jockey Ryan Moore was on board Workforce in his Lingfield outing and is expected to ride him at Epsom.

Ballydoyle's other potential Derby runners are Jan Vermeer, Midas Touch and Cape Blanco with the main English challenge expected from Henry Cecil's Bullet Train.


On Wednesday morning Workforce galloped along with stablemate Total Command.

He was sent to Lingfield rather than galloping on Thursday at Epsom, which is hosting a Breakfast with the Stars event aimed at encouraging trainers to promote the race.

Stoute said he would seek confirmation from owner Prince Khalid Abdullah that Workforce will run at Epsom.

"He worked well, and we wanted to give him that experience of going down a slope," said the trainer, who has won the Derby with Shergar (1981), Shahrastani (1986), Kris Kin (2003) and North Light (2004).

"We will have a word with the Prince, but I'm keen to head to Epsom. It was a good experience for the horse."

Workforce finished second behind Cape Blanco in the Dante at York but Moore said: "He's lovely, laid-back type and he did a nice piece of work."

In the Oaks, Timepiece has long been held in high regard by Cecil, but stablemate Aviate - the Musidora Stakes winner - is the choice of Queally.

"I was pleased with both fillies. They are in great heart and it was hard to split them on their work," said Queally.

"But having gone through the form and looked at all the pros and cons, I've opted for Aviate.

"If you look at the Musidora down through the years they say it's the best Oaks trial and I took that into account.

"I liked the way she quickened up that day and, at the end of the day, she's a filly that's unbeaten and you've got to take that as a factor as well. I can't see the extra distance bothering her too much."

Eddie Ahern, who rode Aviate to victory at York when Queally was serving a suspension, is likely to ride Timepiece.

Saturday 5 June
The Derby: 1315-1630, BBC One/Radio 5 live/online

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09 Apr 11 |  Horse Racing

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