Derby hope Bangkok faces Trial verdict
Bangkok, a 33/1 shot for the Derby, can continue the excellent start to the season of King Power Racing and Silvestre de Sousa and put himself in the frame for Epsom by winning the Bet365 Classic Trial at Sandown Park today.
Andrew Balding's colt, from the first crop of the 2014 Derby winner Australia, won a maiden on the first day of the Flat season when he and Telecaster, which he beat by a length and a quarter, came an eye-catching nine lengths clear of the field. That form has been boosted by Telecaster's nine-length win at Windsor, booking his Dante Stakes ticket, while the fourth, Dubai Instinct, beaten 12 lengths at Doncaster, has won a Nottingham maiden.
"He is working like a decent horse and our three-year-olds are going well," said Balding.
Of course, Bangkok's form is all in maidens and novice races so today's contest is his moment of truth against a few more proven performers, who also have Epsom aims. The most serious could be Martyn Meade's Technician, an impressive Leicester winner.
Sharja Bridge was also successful at Doncaster at the start of the season and can maintain his upward trajectory by winning the Group Two Bet365 Mile.
The jump season's finale at Sandown tomorrow will be without the hoped-for clash between Altior and Cyrname in the Celebration Chase.
Altior will face five rivals in his attempt to surpass the record he shares with Big Buck's for 18 consecutive jump-race victories. (© Daily Telegraph, London)