Telescope retains Derby hopes

Bet on horse racingInvestec Derby hopeful Telescope stepped up his preparations for the big race with a successful workout at Newmarket on Sunday, easing fears over his fitness (Telescope 7/1 – Investec Derby betting).

The three-year-old suffered a setback earlier this week when he was forced to pull out of his seasonal reappearance in the Dante Stakes at York on Thursday.

The Sir Michael Stoute-trained colt grazed his legs when being loaded into a horse box and had to be given antibiotics to help the injury heal.

That initially put Telescope, who is owned by the Highclere Thoroughbred Racing syndicate, in doubt for the showpiece at Epsom next month.

However, jockey Kevin Bradshaw put him through his paces on the Limekilns gallop in Newmarket on Sunday morning alongside older stable-mate Maria’s Choice.

Harry Herbert, a member of the Highclere syndicate, says that Stoute is happy with the run out and Telescope could feature at Lingfield on Wednesday to continue his preparations.

“Sir Michael has called me and he seemed very pleased,” said Herbert. “We’ll just see how he is before we move on to the next step. If he comes through this OK, we’ll take him to Lingfield on Wednesday, where he will have his racecourse gallop.

“As long as Sir Michael is happy with him tonight and tomorrow morning, that will be the plan. As if there is not enough pressure surrounding a British Derby candidate, this has just added to the stress of it all really.

“There’s still a chance he could make the Derby but we’ll just take it day by day.”

Jim Bolger’s unbeaten 2,000 Guineas winner Dawn Approach is the evens favourite for the big race, with Battle Of Marengo priced at 9/2.

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