Aidan O'Brien marshals Marengo for potential Derby squad


Ryan Mania, having been detained a second night in hospital, was discharged in time to head home to Galashiels for a celebration of his breakthrough success in the Grand National. Scans did reveal that the young Scotsman suffered a minor fracture of his C7 vertebra when taking a fall from his very next mount after Auroras Encore, at Hexham on Sunday. But Mania described himself as no more than "a bit tired and sore", having otherwise suffered only soft tissue and ligament damage, and stressed his determination to be riding again sooner rather than later.

His lucky escape, having been airlifted to hospital in Newcastle, serves as a gratifying coda to another National meeting that reliably tested the sport's nerves. Though a trip to Punchestown sounds increasingly likely for Sprinter Sacre, in broad terms the emphasis can now shift serenely to the Flat. And while the early-season programme continues to meander through the next few days, a captivating week of Classic trials is set to begin at Leopardstown on Sunday.

While most of the imminent rehearsals are oriented towards the Guineas, the road to Epsom starts unmistakably in the P W McGrath Memorial Ballysax Stakes – a race often favoured by Aidan O'Brien as a starting point for colts en route to the Investec Derby, often via the Derrinstown Trial. Galileo was the most luminous case in point, while High Chaparral, Fame And Glory and Yeats also began their campaigns here.

While O'Brien seems to have given up hope of getting Kingsbarns to the 2,000 Guineas, following a setback, the top Ballydoyle juvenile of 2012 remains firmly in the Epsom picture and will presumably resurface next month in either the Derrinstown Stud Derby Trial at Leopardstown or the Dante Stakes at York. Even so, his trainer will be looking for a support team to take shape from the six entries he has made for the Ballysax. These include Battle Of Marengo, who rounded off his excellent progress at two with an impressive success in the Beresford Stakes. The last three runnings, however, have been won by Jim Bolger – whose three entries this time include Trading Leather, perhaps not at his best when disappointing behind Kingsbarns in the Racing Post Trophy.

Guineas trials for both colts and fillies are also staged on Sunday's card, and O'Brien is contemplating giving a spin to George Vancouver. The Breeders' Cup Juvenile Turf winner has moved up the Ballydoyle pecking order for Newmarket following the defection of Kingsbarns. Good ground is considered imperative for this colt, but conditions at Leopardstown are better than in many previous years – officially described as good, good to yielding in places.

Turf account

Chris McGrath's Nap

Sandy Lane (3.20 Catterick) Thriving when last seen and new trainer's record with recruits suggests he is hardly likely to stop progressing now.

Next best

Beyeh (5.20 Catterick) Remains lightly raced on the Flat for this stable, hacking up at Yarmouth last autumn.

Where the money's going

Dawn Approach is 6-4 from 7-4 with Betfred for the Qipco 2,000 Guineas.

Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Life and Style
food + drink
Arts and Entertainment
musicBand's first new record for 20 years has some tough acts to follow
peopleAt least it's for a worthwhile cause
A new app has been launched that enables people to have a cuddle from a stranger
voicesMaybe the new app will make it more normal to reach out to strangers
Liam Payne has attacked the media for reporting his tweet of support to Willie Robertson and the subsequent backlash from fans
peopleBut One Direction star insists he is not homophobic
Life and Style
healthFor Pure-O OCD sufferers this is a reality they live in
Life and Style
Sexual health charities have campaigned for the kits to be regulated
healthAmerican woman who did tells parents there is 'nothing to be afraid of'
Shoppers in Covent Garden, London, celebrate after they were the first to buy the iPhone 6, released yesterday
Arts and Entertainment
Ben Affleck stars as prime suspect Nick Dunne in the film adaptation of Gone Girl
filmBen Affleck and Rosamund Pike excel in David Fincher's film, says Geoffrey Macnab
Life and Style
Caption competition
Caption competition
Latest stories from i100
Daily Quiz
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Independent Dating

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

Career Services
iJobs Job Widget
iJobs General

Chemistry Teacher

£85 - £125 per day: Randstad Education Chester: Job Opportunity for Secondary ...

English Teacher

£85 - £125 per day: Randstad Education Chester: Job Opportunity for Secondary ...

English Teacher

£100 - £110 per day: Randstad Education Group: [ Megan Smith 22/09/2014 17:00:...

Foundation and KS1 Teacher

£100 - £140 per day: Randstad Education Birmingham: Foundation and Key Stage 1...

Day In a Page

A roller-coaster tale from the 'voice of a generation'

Not That Kind of Girl:

A roller-coaster tale from 'voice of a generation' Lena Dunham
London is not bedlam or a cradle of vice. In fact it, as much as anywhere, deserves independence

London is not bedlam or a cradle of vice

In fact it, as much as anywhere, deserves independence
Vivienne Westwood 'didn’t want' relationship with Malcolm McLaren

Vivienne Westwood 'didn’t want' relationship with McLaren

Designer 'felt pressured' into going out with Sex Pistols manager
Jourdan Dunn: Model mother

Model mother

Jordan Dunn became one of the best-paid models in the world
Apple still coolest brand – despite U2 PR disaster

Apple still the coolest brand

Despite PR disaster of free U2 album
Scottish referendum: The Yes vote was the love that dared speak its name, but it was not to be

Despite the result, this is the end of the status quo

Boyd Tonkin on the fall-out from the Scottish referendum
Manolo Blahnik: The high priest of heels talks flats, Englishness, and why he loves Mary Beard

Manolo Blahnik: Flats, Englishness, and Mary Beard

The shoe designer who has been dubbed 'the patron saint of the stiletto'
The Beatles biographer reveals exclusive original manuscripts of some of the best pop songs ever written

Scrambled eggs and LSD

Behind The Beatles' lyrics - thanks to Hunter Davis's original manuscript copies
'Normcore' fashion: Blending in is the new standing out in latest catwalk non-trend

'Normcore': Blending in is the new standing out

Just when fashion was in grave danger of running out of trends, it only went and invented the non-trend. Rebecca Gonsalves investigates
Dance’s new leading ladies fight back: How female vocalists are now writing their own hits

New leading ladies of dance fight back

How female vocalists are now writing their own hits
Mystery of the Ground Zero wedding photo

A shot in the dark

Mystery of the wedding photo from Ground Zero
His life, the universe and everything

His life, the universe and everything

New biography sheds light on comic genius of Douglas Adams
Save us from small screen superheroes

Save us from small screen superheroes

Shows like Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D are little more than marketing tools
Reach for the skies

Reach for the skies

From pools to football pitches, rooftop living is looking up
These are the 12 best hotel spas in the UK

12 best hotel spas in the UK

Some hotels go all out on facilities; others stand out for the sheer quality of treatments