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Will the Investec Derby see a fairytale success for The Queen?

31 May 2011

Anxious times ahead as everyone awaits the latest news on the minor injury suffered by Carlton House, hot favourite to win the Investec Derby for The Queen.

Carlton House and jockey Ryan Moore return in triumph after their totesport Dante Stakes victory at York last month.  Image courtesy of

The Queen, one of British Flat racing’s great patrons, has never seen her colours carried to victory in the Investec Derby, the highest profile race in the QIPCO British Champions Series.

The closest she came was way back in 1953, not long after she came to the throne, when Aureole finished second.

She has had many runners in the race since then, but never has one threatened to win.

On Saturday she’s hoping to see Carlton House, hot favourite for the world’s most famous Flat race, pass the winning post in front. But will the Sir Michael Stoute-trained colt be fit enough to take part?

Today it was announced that the Derby favourite had met with a minor setback. A small strain in a front leg joint is the assessment.

The big question now is whether the injury will be enough to prevent him from lining up for the £1.25m contest on Epsom Downs.

An anxious wait is on the cards. The disappointment will be huge if Carlton House is forced to pull out, although there are plenty more big races coming up soon that this immensely promising racehorse can contest.

In other Investec Derby news, Irish ace Johnny Murtagh will ride the QIPCO 2000 Guineas third, Native Khan, for trainer Ed Dunlop, while Kieren Fallon, who could have ridden Native Khan, has opted to ride Recital for Irish handler Aidan O’Brien.

Much of the money in the last week has been for the French colt, Pour Moi, trained by Andre Fabre who rates this as his best ever chance of winning the greatest Classic.

It promises to be a fascinating race, but for now let’s just hope that Carlton House arrives at Epsom fit and well on Saturday.

The race is due off at 4pm and will be shown live on the BBC.

For the Investec Derby race page, click here.