Ruler of The World Conquers Investec Derby
Ruler of The World stormed to victory in the Investec Epsom Derby (Eng-I) June 1, giving trainer Aidan O'Brien a fourth win in the classic as previously unbeaten favorite Dawn Approach failed to stay and finished last.
Ridden by Ryan Moore, Coolmore and partners' Ruler of The World won by 1 1/2 lengths at 7-1 odds after overtaking front-runner Battle of Marengo and holding off runner-up Libertarian. Galileo Rock finished a short head back in third in the second jewel of England's Triple Crown.
Dawn Approach, the 5-4 favorite bidding for a second classic win after taking the QIPCO Two Thousand Guineas (Eng-I), was keen to run and pulled hard under Kevin Manning, who let him run from midfield to grab the lead from Battle of Marengo six furlongs out. His command was short-lived, however, and he began to fade out of it when Battle of Marengo regained the lead with three furlongs to run.
As the field closed in on Battle of Marengo, Ruler of The World asserted himself to take control from his stablemate over a furlong out. He stayed on for a convincing win in 2:39.06.
Battle of Marengo finished fourth, losing a top-three placing to Libertarian, who closed powerfully on the outside to seize second from Galileo Rock.
Libertarian's trainer Elaine Burke came tantalizingly close to becoming the first woman trainer to win the Derby following previous attempts by six other women.
O'Brien had five of the 12 runners in the Derby, including Mars, who finished fifth, Flying The Flag, who was eighth, and 10th-place Festive Cheer.
Yet another European classic winner for Coolmore Stud's leading sire Galileo, Ruler of The World is unbeaten in three career starts, all this year. He came into the 1 1/2-mile race off a six-length triumph May 9 in the MBNA Chester Vase (Eng-II) at about the Derby distance in his stakes debut. He is the first Chester Vase winner to capture the Derby since Shergar in 1981.
"He has improved a lot from Chester and I think that he will get further," said Moore, who won the Derby in 2010 aboard Workforce. "He has got a real likeable attitude.
"We went so slowly, but he quickened well and he kept going. He was only having his third run, he was there early enough, and you have got to give credit to the horse."
O'Brien won last year's Derby with Camelot following wins with High Chaparral (2002) and Galileo (2001). Earlier on the card, O'Brien-trained St Nicholas Abbey won a record third straight Investec Coronation Cup (Eng-I).
Manning said Dawn Approach would not settle.
"He ran too free," he said. "At 100 yards out of the gates, he got competitive, ran too free, and was carting me. He ended up pulling me there (to the lead) and I didn't have any choice."
Bred in Ireland by Coolmore division Southern Bloodstock, Ruler of The World is the second classic winner this season for Galileo, joining Irish Two Thousand Guineas (Ire-I) winner Magician.
Out of Irish group III-placed Love Me True, by Kingmambo, Ruler of The World is a half brother to European champion and sire Duke of Marmalade and U.S. grade III-placed Countess Lemonade. Love Me True is a half sister to U.S. grade II winner Bite the Bullet and English stakes winner Shuailaan.
Ruler of The World's second dam is stakes-placed Lassie's Lady, a half sister to group I winner Wolfhound; grade III winner Weekend Surprise, who is the dam of breed-shaping sire A.P. Indy; and Charming Lassie, the dam of U.S. classic winner and sire Lemon Drop Kid .
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