RUNNER-UP in the Derby at Epsom, Sheikh Hamdan’s Madhmoon looks likely to bid for Classic compensation in the Dubai Duty Free Irish Derby on The Curragh on 29 June. The Kevin Prendergast-trained colt hit the front 2f from home in the Derby at Epsom before, having seemingly fought off just about all challengers, he succumbed in the final strides to Anthony Van Dyck. With doubts about his stamina prior to Epsom, the fact the 2000 Guineas fourth was only beaten half a length seemed to answer the question. “The Irish Derby was our first discussion on the Monday after the race, depending on how the horse is,” said the owner’s racing manager, Angus Gold.
“We have the option of coming back to a mile and a quarter with him, but if we do that the obvious race is the Eclipse, which we’d have to supplement for anyway and it would be a third trip over to England and Sheikh Hamdan may want to keep him in Ireland. “The obvious race for Madhmoon is the 1m2f Irish Champion Stakes. I think he’s tailor-made for that but nobody can say he didn’t stay, because if the winner hadn’t run he’d have won a Derby. “From my own point of view he made up his ground so quickly between three and one out that he’d be more effective at a mile and a quarter, but that is only my personal view. I’m not saying he didn’t stay, otherwise he wouldn’t have been placed. “He stumbled at the path and Chris Hayes said that just lit him up a little bit earlier than he wanted and he went and hit the front when he’d have loved to have been able to wait a bit longer.”