Carlton House out for revenge

A huge well done to Rory McIlroy for landing the US Open and this huge young talent looks sure to be brightening up the golf scene for years to come.

A huge well done to Rory McIlroy for landing the US Open and this huge young talent looks sure to be brightening up the golf scene for years to come.

This Sunday the Dubai Duty Free Irish Derby takes pride of place at The Curragh and, at time of writing, we have English Derby third Carlton House as 7-4 favourite despite the fact that he is only a likely contestant.

As previously mentioned here, Ryan Moore was furious at Epsom as he considered his chance on Carlton House was hindered by outsiders getting in his way on the famously undulating track and his mount also lost a shoe entering the closing stages.

But I’m going to opt for Ed Dunlop’s Native Khan, who was only a length and a half behind Carlton House in England, and, in my opinion, was just as unlucky as the Queen’s horse.

I think the selection represents a bit of value at 10-1, certainly if you want to back each-way, as he was squeezed for room about a furlong out which suggests that he too could have finished closer to winner Pour Moi.

Dunlop wasn’t 100% sure that Native Khan would stay the additional half mile of the Derby after he finished a particularly creditable third behind Frankel in the English 2,000 Guineas.

But clearly he does get the trip well and I think the Newmarket trainer has definitely made the right decision in keeping my fancy to his own age group for the moment and he can have a crack at the older generations later in the season.

This horse, who has reportedly come out of his last race well, made the headlines before the English Derby as Kieren Fallon wanted to ride Recital for Aidan O’Brien instead.

But Johnny Murtagh proved a more than able replacement and again rides him at the weekend which in my mind is actually a bonus as he has won the race four times including his first success on Sinndar in 2000 and the last two renewals on Fame And Glory and Cape Blanco.

I had been hoping to tip Foot Perfect in Sunday’s Paddy Power Sprint but David Marnane told my twitter colleagues on @pphorseracing that the progressive three-year-old will run at Tipperary or The Curragh on Friday evening instead.

So I’m going to go for a horse called Tough As Nails who lives up to his name and is likely to run in Sunday’s Railway Stakes.

He was beaten a fag paper in a Listed race at the same venue last month by Power, who has franked the form in no uncertain terms by winning the Coventry Stakes at Royal Ascot and costing us a fortune in the process!

Michael Mulvany, Tough As Nails’s trainer, told me: “At the end of the day that was Power and my fellow has to step up to the plate again.

“But he seems to be in very good form and is getting bigger and stronger so hopefully he’s improving. He’s a very fast horse on good ground.”

Regulars will know that I’ve already gone for Andy Murray to win Wimbledon so what about Sunday’s European Grand Prix in Valencia.

We’ve got last year’s winner Red Bull’s Sebastian Vettel as 11-10 favourite but that’s short enough as you can’t make any errors as there are no run-off zones and it’s easy to end up in the wall.

So Lewis Hamilton at 3-1 appeals as he arguably drives this street circuit better than anyone having finished runner-up for the last three years.

Keep your eye on Turn 12 as overtaking is tricky and this is really the only place.


Sunday The Curragh 2.10pm Tough As Nails

Sunday The Curragh 3.50pm Native Khan

Sunday 2pm European Grand Prix Lewis Hamilton