Belfast Telegraph

Thursday 28 August 2014

Trading goes close in Dante

Libertarian sees off the Irish raiders in the Dante

Trading Leather has Classic options open to him after filling the runner-up berth in the Betfred Dante Stakes at York.

Jim Bolger's colt was always to the fore and stuck to his guns well, playing second fiddle only to surprise 33-1 winner Libertarian.

Bolger said: "I couldn't be more happy with him and we expect him to come on a lot for the run, although he was as fit as I could get him at home. He'd only go to Epsom if something happened to Dawn Approach. This horse and Loch Garman have the options of the Irish Guineas and the French Derby.

"Later on there's the Irish Derby, but that might be open to Dawn Approach as well."

Asked for his view on the fortnight of Derby trials, he said cryptically: "I think the only trials that matter are the ones at Coolcullen (his stable). We're ecstatic with them."

Aidan O'Brien's Indian Chief, the 11-4 favourite, was back in third, and Coolmore's UK representative Kevin Buckley said: "Joseph (O'Brien) was happy enough with him and he's probably still a bit inexperienced. This was a big step up, but Joseph felt confident he'd get a mile and a half."

Karl Burke, the winning trainer's husband and assistant, said of Libertarian: "It is a great win for the yard and everyone connected with the horse. He's a proper horse and having not had many (Derby) horses, or Dante horses even, you are tilting at windmills a bit. We have always thought a lot of him.

"If you watch the race at Sandown it was a nonsense of a race for him. Unfortunately Phil (Makin) got stuck on the outside of a horse that was hanging badly and he drifted out. He's such a green horse which is why we came back today to give him more racecourse experience.

"He's a big backward animal that has taken a lot of time. It was only in March time that he really began to pick up in his work and he's done nothing but improve since then."

Jockey William Buick said: "It was a true-run race and the best horse won on the day. He's a fine big horse. Karl said to me beforehand that as long as I didn't get too far away he'd have a squeak as he stays very well."

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