Dante Preview: Godolphin quartet out to stake Derby claim

Saeed Bin Surror is confident Benbatl can make amends in a hot renewal of the Dante at York.

The Godolphin three-year-old was last seen finishing third in the Craven at Newmarket, but should relish the longer trip.

With Group One winning pedigree on both sides of the family, he’s certainly a key player in this eleven runner contest.

“He didn’t really handle the ground at Newmarket. It was too quick for him. He will prefer easy ground,” Bin Surror told Godolphin.

“His last piece of work was very good, and he has been improving all the time at home. We know he needs this step up in trip.”

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@TomDenhamPhotos and @Horseracing_uk

Meanwhile Kevin Ryan, who gave HTF readers five horses to keep an eye out for, is represented by Syphax who won the Group Thrree Acomb at this track in August.

On the three-year-old’s only start this season he finished second in a conditions race over a mile, when shaping up to suggest this is close to his optimum trip.

“He has really improved for his run at Newcastle, and he has worked very, very well at home. I’m hopeful of a big run from him,” Ryan told Godolphin.

Wolf Country represents Charlie Appleby, he was last seen winning a listed contest in France.

“I have been very pleased how he has progressed since his trip to France, and some ease in the ground should be to his liking,” Appleby said.

“The drop back in trip is a slight concern, but he is ready to run a good race.”

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Richard Fahey has never saddled a Dante or Derby winner.

Richard Fahey is represented by Forest Ranger who defeated Syphax when they clashed at Newcastle last month, but the Yorkshire handler isn’t sure whether his three-year-old is good enough to win this Group Two prize.

“I’m really looking forward to running Forest Ranger,” said Fahey to his SportingLife blog.

“Sadly everything’s turned here. The horses you didn’t want to run are the ones who we are facing, but I really like my horse.

“There was no fluke about his win at Newcastle on his reappearance where he beat some highly regarded rivals.

“He’s very laid back and the outing has done him the world of good. Whether he’s good enough to win a Dante we’ll have to see but it’s been the plan for a while and he couldn’t be in better form.

Crystal Ocean represents Sir Michael Stoute, he must progress after his sole success came in maiden company.

Joseph and Aidan O’Brien clash in the Group Two contest. Ballydoyle are represented by Exemplar who wasn’t too far off stable rivals Yucatan and Capri in a Group Two contest at the Curragh last September. Rekindling runs for Joseph O’Brien, he won a Group Three prize at Leopardstown on his last start.

Expensive purchase Swiss Storm makes his seasonal bow, he was last seen winning a maiden at Newbury ahead of promising prospect City Of Joy.

Mark Johnston runs Permian, and David Menuisier saddles Contrapposoto.

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