Saturday will see the running of Britian's richest race with The Derby Stakes taking place at Epsom. Richard is represented in the classic by the Chelsea Thoroughbreds owned HUMPHREY BOGART. 'The son of Tagula has thrived since his win in the Derby Trial Stakes at Lingfield. He has continued to improve with every run this season and I feel that the experience around Epsom and his regular rider Sean Levey should stand him in very good stead. He has a slightly tricky draw in 2, but I hope he can jump and get himself a nice spot in what will be a frantic first few furlongs.'
While the majority of the attention will be fixated on The Derby, team Hannon will also be busy elsewhere with a total of 12 runners at five different tracks this weekend.
LEGENDARY LUNCH got the day off to a great start with a gutsy win in the Woodcote Stakes. He got a nice split up the rail and kicked clear, just running a bit green having been in front for so long. 'He wasn't right the other day so I am very pleased that he is back to his best. He galloped really well on Tuesday and that prompted me to come here today. He has plenty of options now, over five and six furlongs. Royal Ascot is there, but I will speak to the owners before making a decision.'
Later in the card at Epsom, STORM RISING will contest the Investec Specialist Handicap. 'He was very unlucky on his last start at Newmarket and if things go better today I can see him being right there on the line.'
Elsewhere today, Richard will be represented by three horses at Bath and one horse at Goodwood. DESERT MARK and RESTORE will both contest a Novice Stakes race over 5 furlongs ridden by Kieran O'Neill and Timmy Murphy respectively. 'RESTORE should improve on his recent run when fourth at Lingfield while DESERT MARK is having his first start and should come on from his run today'. Later in the card at Bath, GOLD ELIZA, a three-year-old filly by Pivotal, will run in the final race of the evening under apprentice jockey Hollie Doyle who claims seven pounds. Also at Goodwood on Friday, the unraced Hamdan Al Maktoum owned Colt, MUTAWATHEB is set to make his debut. 'He is a lovely Colt and has been working well at home. He will improve on whatever he does today'.
Later on the Derby day card at Epsom on Saturday, Richard will send out SHELL BAY in the penultimate race of the day, the Investec Finance Stakes 'He got very tired late on at Windsor on Monday and should strip fitter for that run. He has been working well at home and can run a nice race in this tricky handicap'. At Doncaster DANEHILL KODIAC, a son of Kodiac, will run in a classified stakes race. 'He ran a nice fourth at Newbury last time behind the supplemented French Derby runner Imperial Aviator. He has come on for that run and should run a nice race on what is his second start this season.' DUBAIS SECRET will contest a handicap at the same track. 'He won nicely on his previous start and I hope he can repeat that form here. He looks great and seems right back to where he was.'
Lingfield will see a further two runners in JARIR and AL SAILIYAH, who run in two separate handicaps.
We want to take this opportunity to wish all connections the very best of luck this weekend, and hope that we will be writing our next news article as Derby Champions!