Newspaper article Evening Gazette (Middlesbrough, England)

Shanty to Star in Derby Trial

Newspaper article Evening Gazette (Middlesbrough, England)

Shanty to Star in Derby Trial

Article excerpt

Byline: Preview By Naomi Matthew

Mark Johnston won the Lingfield Derby Trial with the hugely impressive Bandari last season and the in-form Yorkshire trainer can follow up with Shanty Star in tomorrow's renewal.

The race was won by subsequent Vodafone Derby hero High-Rise on his way to Epsom five years ago, but there does not appear to be a stand-out candidate in the field this time and Shanty Star is unlikely to have to reproduce his stablemate's fireworks to take the prize.

The yard knew the score with him last season and after a debut run, stepped him up to 10 furlongs at Pontefract in October. He relished the trip, beating Fellow Ship a length and a quarter with the rest six lengths and more away.

On his only run this season, in a Catterick event that attracted several promising types, Shanty Star looked about to be swallowed up, but Kevin Darley knew what he had under him and rousted him along for a victory by two and a half lengths from Inchberry.

Staying is very much his game, and he appears to have a heart to match his ability, which is half the battle. Expect improvement tomorrow in a race entitled the Bet Attheraces On 0800 083 83 83 Derby Trial (3.15).

There is no finer trainer of three-year-old fillies than Henry Cecil and the Warren Place maestro has used the Lingfield Oaks Trial as a stepping stone to Epsom success twice recently, with Lady Carla in 1996 and Ramruma in 1999.

His representative this time in the Bet Attheraces 0800 083 83 83 Oaks Trial (2.15) is the exquisitely bred Midsummer, a Kingmambo half-sister to Oaks heroine Reams Of Verse and Eclipse winner Elmaamul.

She has had just the one run, winning a Kempton maiden by two and a half lengths from Gold Medallist last month, and though the bare form is nothing special, she showed plenty of promise, stretching clear of a bunched field and having them well strung out at the finish. …

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