Harry Dunlop’s useful Knight To Behold, who beat only one home in last Saturday’s Group 1 Investec Derby at Epsom, is to be given time to recover from his travails before regrouping ahead of the final Classic of the season, the St Leger at Doncaster in September.
Winner of the Listed Betfred Derby Trial at Lingfield last month, the Neil Jones-owned colt was fancied in some quarters to run a big race at Epsom having produced in eyecatching front-running effort in the Trial to easily see off Aidan O’Brien’s Kew Gardens, among others. Starting at a well supported 14/1 for the Derby, the son of Sea The Stars had to work hard to get to the lead early on then was pestered throughout by his old rival Kew Gardens. Unsurprisingly, he was a spent force when headed three furlongs out and eventually trailed home 33 lengths back in 11th place of the 12 runners behind the impressive winner Masar.
“I think we’ll consider races like the Great Voltigeur [Stakes at York in August], Dunlop told reporters. “We’ve got him in other races as well, like the Grand Prix de Paris in France [on July 14]. “We’ll just bide our time and see how he is really. He had to work hard to get the lead and then was never allowed to settle, and Richard [Kingscote, jockey] said that despite winning at Lingfield, he didn’t feel Epsom was really his scene – he was changing his legs a lot.”
“We’ll just forget about it and hopefully we’ve got some exciting times ahead with him. He’s looked a St Leger horse for a while, so we’ll very much be looking at that.”
Dunlop’s comments appear to rule Knight To Behold out of the forthcoming Royal Ascot meeting for which he held an entry in the Group 2 King Edward VII Stakes. He is a top priced 33/1 shot with Ladbrokes for the world’s oldest Classic, the St Leger, at Doncaster on September 15.
Written by Paul Alster
Paul Alster has been part of the British and international racing media for more than three decades working as a race commentator, TV/radio presenter, journalist, betting correspondent, SP returner, and form analyst. He’s always sought out overpriced runners in handicap races, a quest that excites him as much now as it did at the start of his career.