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Sugar form now sweet for Derby


Trainer Patrick Prendergast. Picture: Matt Browne/SPORTSFILE

Trainer Patrick Prendergast. Picture: Matt Browne/SPORTSFILE

Trainer Patrick Prendergast. Picture: Matt Browne/SPORTSFILE

BOOKMAKERS Boylesports make Sugar Boy an 8/1 shot to win the Dubai Duty Free Irish Derby at the Curragh later this month and the colt, whose form was given a huge boost at Epsom over the weekend, is now likely to go straight there without another run, according to trainer Patrick Prendergast.

Sugar Boy had both Libertarian and Galileo Rock behind him at Sandown when he was last seen and that duo could hardly have done much more to highlight the form by finishing second and third in last Saturday's Epsom Derby.

Prendergast had hoped to take in the listed King George V Cup at Leopardstown tomorrow night, but with the ground having firm in the description he is now going to wait with the listed and Group Three winner, and the trainer maintains he has no regrets about missing the English Derby last weekend.

"It was a strange sort of race where plenty of horses had their chances spoiled by the slow early pace and it could just as easily have been him who ended up almost having no race at all," said the Curragh handler.

"It was a good performance by the winner, but you'd have to say Sugar Boy's form is looking better and better now. I know Libertarian was badly hammered at Sandown and you wouldn't take that too literally, but the way that David's (Wachman) horse (Galileo Rock) has run, you have to think he'd have been right there."

Sugar Boy hasn't ran since winning at Sandown back in April and as well as the Epsom form boost, Libertarian has also subsequently won the Dante Stakes since Sandown and proved the form of that race to be very solid.

"He was entered at Leopardstown on Friday, but if the ground is too firm he won't be running. He certainly doesn't have to run there in order to get ready for the Irish Derby – the idea was just to keep him ticking over, but he's in great form at home.

Prendergast concluded: "If I'm honest, I think he has improved again since Sandown. It's very exciting."