Vertem Futurity Trophy At Doncaster

Auguste Rodin is ante-post favourite for the Derby at Epsom in 2023

The Gr1 Vertem Futurity Stakes (16h35) at Doncaster on Saturday is the final domestic Group 1 of the season. A significant race for juveniles with regards the following year’s Classics. Winners of the juvenile feature have gone on to Classic glory at Newmarket and Epsom and some have returned to Town Moor to win the following year’s St. Leger.

Auguste Rodin tops Futurity Trophy field for O’Brien (Pic – Facebook – TechFakt / Sky Sports)

Its worth noting that the track has received its fair share of rain over the last few days and currently the going is described as soft.

Aidan O’Brien has won the race a record equalling ten times and in Auguste Rodin he has a colt that looks capable of taking him into the outright lead.

By Japanese sensation Deep Impact, he’s a general 5/6 favourite and on current form there is plenty of evidence to suggest he has earned that price.

Beaten on debut by subsequent Gr2 Beresford Stakes winner Crypto Force when unlucky in running at the Curragh, Auguste Rodin won his remaining two starts comfortably, including the Gr2 Champions Juvenile Stakes at Leopardstown.

He has looked good in the closing stages once his stamina came into play on both occasions and those races were run on soft ground.

Ryan Moore rides the favourite in a field of eight and he looks the one they all have to beat.

The main threat to O’Brien’s stranglehold on the race could come from the Gosden-trained second favourite Epictetus, who will be ridden by Frankie Dettori and was last seen finishing second to Godolphin’s Silver Knott at Newmarket in the Gr3 Autumn Stakes. By Kingman, the colt is the highest rated runner, 2lbs higher then the favourite and brings strong form to the contest.

Stormbuster, a well bred Dubawi colt from the inform Andrew Balding yard should ensure a good pace and may stay on into the placings.

Earlier on the card, Aesop’s Fables could provide Aidan O’Brien and Moore with the first leg of a winning double in the Listed Carlsberg Marstons Doncaster Stakes (16h00) over 6-furlongs. The stable also field 8-length winning maiden winner Hispanic (soft ground) in the contest, but Moore sticks with the Gr2 Irish EBF Futurity winner. 


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