Aidan O’Brien’s Saxon Warrior (5-6f), a winner of his two racecourse starts to date, has been installed as 6-1 favourite by Paddy Power for the 2018 Investec Derby at Epsom following an impressive victory in the Group 2 Juddmonte Beresford Stakes at Naas on Sunday. 
The colt, a second two year-old stakes winner this year for his sire Deep Impact, gave his trainer an incredible 16th success in the race, and his seventh victory in succession, as the Ryan Moore-ridden horse easily accounted for his stable mate Delano Roosevelt by two and a half lengths, with the much-hyped Brendan Duke-trained Warm The Voice finishing in third.

Ballydoyle trainer Aidan O’Brien spoke about his colt’s win shortly after the race:

“We thought he was a nice colt before he ran at The Curragh, but we felt that he was just ready to go racing. When Donnacha (O’Brien) eased him out, he took off and he had to be a good colt to do what he did (on his first outing). You’re never sure until they run again, but it was a competitive race today and Ryan was delighted with him.”

Though Saxon Warrior is entered for the Racing Post Trophy at Doncaster on October 28th, his trainer admitted he was unsure whether the colt would run again this season, but felt the horse had already gained much experience in his two runs. 

Interestingly the last horse to win the Group 2 Beresford Stakes as a two year-old and then go on to win the Investec Derby in his three year-old season was the great Sea The Starts. 

Saxon Warrior may have started his career well but has a lot to achieve yet to match the former John Oxx-trained champion.

Article by  Breandán Ó hUallacháin

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