where the horse is always the hero
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Posted 2019-06-30 00:57:30  
Royal Shock in Irish Derby

Another Derby winner for jockey Padraig Beggy and another shock result with 33-1 shot Sovereign making most to land the Dubai Duty Free Irish Derby, two years after he took the Derby at Epsom on 40-1 chance Wings Of Eagles.

Sovereign’s six-length victory stunned most of the 11,957 in attendance and from early in the straight there was only going to be one outcome.

The expected battle between the Derby hero Anthony Van Dyck and Madhmoon, who finished close behind him in the Epsom Classic, failed to materialise, with Sovereign staying on strongly having gone to the front after two furlongs.

Anthony Van Dyck, who was attempting to become the fifth O'Brien-trained colt to complete the Epsom-Curragh Derby double, finished second with Madhmoon fourth and Broome sixth as O’Brien, whose Norway finished third, completed a 1-2-3 in the race for the sixth time.

O’Brien, who was winning the event for the 13th time, said: “Sovereign is a very straightforward colt. He had some good form last season and was second in the Ballysax in April. He made a lot of the running at Epsom and here he showed, like a lot of Galileos, that he wasn’t for catching on quick ground.

"We have plenty of options for him and he’ll get the St Leger trip. We’ll make a plan when we see how he's come out of the race. We might look at the King George or Grand Prix de Paris.

“It wasn’t the result we were expecting, but full marks to Padraig, I’m delighted for him.”

O'Brien added: "Anthony Van Dyck ran well but Sovereign was not for catching today. Broome missed the break and never really got into the race."

Beggy, who was riding his first winner of the season, said: “It’s a very good feeling to win the Irish Derby. The Curragh is where I served my apprenticeship with Kevin Prendergast and this means even more to me than winning the Epsom Derby.

“I rode Sovereign at Epsom and here he jumped out lovely and went a strong gallop. When I pressed the button turning for home he found for me and when I asked him again two furlongs down he found again."

Kevin Prendergast, whose dreams of a first Irish Derby win fell flat, said of Madhmoon: “It was a funny race. They went like the clappers and our horse could never really get into contention. Obviously I’m disappointed and I’d say we might drop him down to ten furlongs. I’ll talk to Angus Gold [owner Hamdan Al Maktoum’s racing manager] and we’ll make a plan.”

Madhmoon's rider Chris Hayes was in agreement with Prendergast in feeling that a drop in trip is needed, and added he was in trouble a fair way from the finish

"It was a very strangely run race," he said. "They went off a real strong gallop and I made a plan to follow Ryan [Moore on Anthony Van Dyck], but he was struggling a long way out.

"The leader had flown, I was never going to make up that ground and Madhmoon probably didn't stay. I think the Irish Champion Stakes is the best race for him."

As for Beggy, he is now a cult hero with bookmakers, and Paddy Power spokesman Paul Binfield said: "Padraig has now won Derbys at 40-1 and 33-1, so it's fair to say his picture will now be taking pride of place on the wall at Power Tower. That was the best result in the book for the layers and a real skinner."

Paddy Power made Sovereign a 25-1 shot (from 200) for the King George, and 10-1 (from 20) for the William Hill St Leger.

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