Ambiente Friendly camp opt for Irish Derby bid

‘We were very keen to keep him at a mile and a half and stay against his own age group.’

Ambiente Friendly will aim to go one better than at Epsom when he contests the Dubai Duty Free Irish Derby at the Curragh on June 30.

The James Fanshawe-trained colt shot to prominence with a startling performance in the Lingfield Derby Trial.

Ridden by Rab Havlin for the first time at Epsom, he travelled ominously well for much of the contest before a rejuvenated City Of Troy shot through on his inside and he came out a clear second best.

Ambiente Friendly after finishing second in the Derby
Ambiente Friendly after finishing second in the Derby (PA)

With Aidan O’Brien’s number one now heading for the Coral-Eclipse at Sandown, co-owner Tim Gredley explained that Ambiente Friendly will tackle 12 furlongs once more against his own age group.

He said: “After the dust settled, we were very keen to keep him at a mile and a half and, as importantly, stay against his own age group. It was the only option really and I’m really looking forward to it and I think the race will suit him.

“We want to do what is right by the horse and the conditions of the Irish Derby seem a lot more favourable than going to the Eclipse.

“They came and won our Derby and for the sport, it only seems fair to go and have a go over there. We think the gradients of the Curragh and conditions of the race will suit, so that is why we have made the decision to go there.”

Ambiente Friendly, who needs to be supplemented to the list of entries, will once again be partnered by Havlin, with the colt’s Epsom pilot playing a key role in discussions about the Irish Derby assignment.

Gredley added: “Rab will ride and we all had a good chat this morning – Mr Fanshawe and I also spoke to Rab and Freddie Tylicki. We are all in unanimous agreement that we should go to Ireland.”

Paddy Power have promoted Ambiente Friendly to 5-4 favourite for the Irish Derby, with Epsom third Los Angeles next best in the betting at 6-4 after being confirmed as an intended runner by O’Brien.

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