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    Bellum Justum wins at Epsom, staking a claim to the Derby
Bellum Justum wins at Epsom, staking a claim to the Derby
Bellum Justum wins at Epsom, staking a claim to the Derby. Source: irishexaminer.com

Bellum Justum wins at Epsom, staking a claim to the Derby

After Andrew Balding's colt won the Betfred Blue Riband Trial at Epsom, Bellum Justum's Derby price was halved.

Even though it took him four tries to get off the mark as a juvenile, he made another step forward here and his victory over Kevin Ryan's Inisherin looks much stronger now than it did eventually.

Ridden by Oisin Murphy, he was happy to follow Ryan Moore's lead on Aidan O'Brien's Chief Little Rock, and as those in behind struggled to catch up, it quickly turned into a battle.

Bellum Justum held a short advantage for much of the final distance but while he was leading the Ballydoyle runner close home, Roger Varian's Defiance began to stay on strongly. 

On only his third outing, he looked promising for the future as he closed to within three-quarters of a length of the 9-1 winner without appearing to be winning.

For the Derby, Bellum Justum was cut by both Coral and Paddy Power from the 50s to 25-1.

“He had a setback about a month ago and he missed 10 days, so he’s entitled to come on for that today,” Balding told Racing TV. “His form looked pretty strong and he improved a lot with racing last year and he’s entitled to improve from two to three, so we were fairly sure he’d be there or thereabouts but we’re expecting him to come on for it. He’s in the Dante and if he was going to run again that would be the likely target, we’ll just see how the Guineas goes and the other trials and we might end up coming back here. He’s out of an Oasis Dream mare but he’s closely related to Fox Tal who stayed a mile and a half. He’s up there with our best three-year-olds but unfortunately, the one we were really excited about, Anzac Day, has had a setback.”

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