By Jon Lees
GB: Richard Hughes will have to wait another year to saddle his first runner in the Investec Derby after he ruled out Brentford Hope following a setback.
The former champion jockey’s suspicions that he had an exciting prospect on his hands were borne out when the son of Camelot ran out an impressive five-length debut winner at Newmarket in October last year.
Brentford Hope was a 25-1 chance for the Derby on the back of his winning performance in the colours of Cheltenham Festival-winning owners Bernardine and Sean Mulryan.
But Lambourn trainer Hughes has revealed the colt will not be ready for either the Irish Derby or Derby at Epsom.
Hughes said: “He will run in five to six weeks, but he won’t make the Derby. I wouldn’t send him to the Derby with one run under his belt and I needed to get a prep race into him and I won’t get that in time.
“I would have loved to have had a runner in the Derby but there will be plenty of races for him. It might be for luck – a lot of Derby horses are never heard of again after running in that race.”
Brentford Hope, who cost Hughes €130,000 at the 2019 Arqana May breeze-up, went into many notebooks when cantering to the front at Newmarket to pull clear of his rivals.
Hughes said: “One horse of Brian Meehan’s [Arthurian Fable, third] came out of that race yesterday and finished second. It will be a help when we start seeing how the race will turn out.
“I have no plan. I am going to take time getting him back – I am not under any pressure. I will let him do the talking then.”