Racing: O'Donohoe to ride Adair

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The Independent Online
FRANKIE DETTORI will ride Dubai Millennium in Saturday's Derby, it was confirmed yesterday. Daragh O'Donohoe was named as the partner of stablemate Adair, and Rhagaas could yet make it a three-tiered challenge for Godolphin if there is significantly more rain at Epsom.

Godolphin's racing manager Simon Crisford said: "As things stand Frankie rides Dubai Millennium and Daragh O'Donohoe will be on Adair. Only if Zaajer goes to France will Richard Hills take the ride on Adair. Rhagaas goes for the French Derby and will only run at Epsom if there is a lot more rain. In the Oaks, Frankie has chosen to stay with Zahrat Dubai and Gary Stevens will ride Kilting."

Heavy rain at Epsom has put the going on the soft side two days before the start of the meeting. "We have had a good old soaking," admitted clerk of the course Andrew Cooper. "There was about an inch of rain. It's taken the rain very well and the ground is no worse than good to soft.'' More showers are forecast up to and including Saturday.

Housemaster delighted Michael Bell as he warmed up for Epsom with a work- out in Newmarket. His trainer was happy to learn of the rain on the Downs.

Willie Carson predicted that this year's race will be a gruelling test, but is confident that Oath, whom he manages on behalf of the Thoroughbred Corporation, will have what it takes on Saturday.

Carson said: "I think stamina will be the No 1 thing this year, with the ground being testing. The four or five horses who will stay a mile and a half will be the dangers. Sometimes you can `coast' round and not really stay, but that is when the ground is firm - it isn't firm this year."

Ladbrokes cut the odds for Daliapour, trained by Luca Cumani, to 8-1 from 11-1 late yesterday. The same firm eased the Aidan O'Brien-trained Saffron Walden out to 7-1 from 5-1, and chopped his stablemate Tchaikovsky to 33-1 from 50-1.

DERBY: (Epsom, Saturday) William Hill: 5-1 Dubai Millennium, 13-2 Oath (from 6-1), 7-1 Saffron Walden, 8-1 Beat All (from 7-1), Daliapour (from 10-1), Lucido, 9-1 Housemaster, 10-1 Salford Express (from 12-1), 14-1 Adair (from 12-1), Val Royal, 16-1 Zaajer (from 25-1), 25-1 others.

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