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Curragh blip no reason to discount Libertarian in St Leger

| 29.07.2013

Although only three Derby winners have attempted to win the St Leger since Nijinsky sealed the Triple Crown with victory back in 1970, the Epsom race has still proved a fair pointer for the world’s oldest Classic – good news for Libertarian.

In failing to complete a Triple Crown of his own in 2012, Camelot showed just how tough a proposition it is to follow up Epsom success with a win over 2f further at Doncaster, but the highest placed finisher from the Derby has been a reliable proposition on Town Moor since 2002.

In the last 11 years the colt who had earned the best placing at Epsom has made the each-way places on no fewer than seven occasions, winning the final Classic of the campaign four times.

At 10/1 Libertarian is currently twice the price of Galileo Rock – whom he pipped to the silver medal at Epsom – in the betting for the St Leger, with winner Ruler Of The World absent from the entries.

Having shortened into favouritism for the Town Moor staying test on the back of his performance on the Downs, the son of New Approach was shunted back out to 10/1 after finishing eighth of nine in the Irish Derby at the Curragh.

Galileo Rock was second in that contest, but the manner of Libertarian’s defeat was too bad to be true and afterwards Karl Burke – from who Saeed Bin Suroor has subsequently taken over the colt’s training – admitted that it may well have been one run too many, given it was the three-year-old’s fifth run of his maiden season in racing.

Prior to that he’d flown home off a distinctly modest Epsom pace, but his victory in the Dante at York proves he can score off a more decent clip and he beat subsequent Irish Derby winner and King George second Trading Leather there, adding further credence to the school of thought that suggests his Curragh no-show was an anomaly.

He’ll now have a period of recuperation to build towards the traditional Leger trial the Great Voltigeur at York in late August, for which he holds an entry.

By a Derby winner out of a Darshaan mare who was herself a winner over 2m, he’s unlikely to lack for staying power over the Leger trip having looked all about stamina prior to his last outing.

All Odds and Markets are correct as of the date of publishing.



Thomas Reynolds