The Classics 2023 - Guineas, Derby, Oaks, St Leger

“The thoroughbred exists because its selection has depended, not on experts, technicians or zoologists, but on a piece of wood: the winning post of the Epsom Derby.”  Frederico Tesio

Classics 2023 ante-post portfolio

Derby: Naval Power 27-1 each-way

26th January 2023 

Before Naval Power makes his seasonal debut in the 1m1f Nad Al Sheba Turf at Meydan on Friday evening I have backed him at 27-1 (random price) each-way with Hills for the Derby. I talked of him every run of his two-year-old campaign, was odds-on and unbackable more than one, and the colt is a three-year-old I will be keeping a close eye on this year. For me it is not out of the question that he becomes a Derby hope for Godolphin. It’s not unknown for the offspring of Teofilo to get middle distances and on the dam side, there is some stamina in the family, Dubawi is his grandsire being the sire of Emirates Rewards which has to be seen as a plus as well. He was fancied by many for the G.1 Dewhurst Stakes last October, myself included and I backed him, but having gone unbeaten on his four starts to that point he finished sixth; was reported to have bled during the race and he produced an unsatisfactory scope afterwards. Charlie Appleby told the Dubai Racing Club website “I have been pleased with his preparation but there will be improvement to come for the run. We are looking at potentially giving him one start in Dubai before looking at some of the Classic trials in the UK.”