O'Brien hopefuls on trial

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The Independent Online

The trainers Aidan O'Brien and Saeed bin Suroor dominate the entries for the Derby Trial at Lingfield on Saturday with six of the 15 between them. O'Brien can choose between Apollo Victoria, Bashkir, Mythological and Royal Kingdom, while the Godolphin handler has put in Dubai Two Thousand and River's Curtain. The Oaks Trial on the same card has attracted 10 fillies including Chiang Mai, trained by O'Brien.

Lord Flasheart paid a compliment to Kutub, who beat him in the Prix Noailles but has been removed from the Derby betting by William Hill and Ladbrokes, when winning the Prix Hocquart at Chantilly yesterday.

Lahan will have to improve on her victory in the 1,000 Guineas if she is to challenge Kings Best, the winner of the 2,000 Guineas. That is the view of British Horseracing Board Handicapper, who has put John Gosden's charge on a rating of 117. It is 10lb less than the mark for Kings Best, who incidentally had the apostrophe officially removed from his name yesterday. A decision about Kings Best running in the Derby is unlikely to made for several weeks, but Lahan will definitely miss the Oaks and may be trained for the Irish 1000 Guineas at the Curragh, where she could meet the Guineas fourth, Seazun. The owners of Petrushka, third in the 1,000 Guineas, think the filly will do better in the Oaks. Trainer Sir Michael Stoute believes Petrushka was below-par because she is coming into season. A pulled muscle may have been the cause for Bintalreef's poor showing.

Preseli, Ireland's top-rated two-year-old filly in 1999, runs in the Derrinstown Stud 1,000 Guineas Trial at Leopardstown on Sunday.

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