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William Haggas faces Derby headache after Economics bolts up at York


WALLY William Haggas could do with a lesson in Economics after watching his horse bolt up in the Dante.

Because the top trainer took the colt OUT of the Derby last week – and now it will cost £75,000 to put him back IN. 

Economics was an emphatic winner of the Dante Stakes


Economics was an emphatic winner of the Dante StakesCredit: PA

You don’t need to be a mathematical genius to realise those sums don’t add up, even if the equine Economics did scoop over £100,000 when thumping them by six lengths at York.

Haggas has adored this big beast from day one but reckons Epsom and the Derby aren’t the right track and race combo at this stage of the horse’s career.

But you have to wonder if he is having second thoughts now.

There was so much to like about this performance from Economics, who is arguably the most impressive winner of the Dante we’ve seen this century. And it was just the third run of his life.


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The Newmarket dogs were barking about this lad at Newbury last month, and he landed a big punt when breaking his maiden at the second attempt.

He still looked greener than Kermit that day, but this was a much more polished, professional and power-packed performance.

Top jock Tom Marquand held him up off the strong early pace and he cruised up into contention going strongly.

Hot favourite Ancient Wisdom, one of last year’s best two-year-old’s, looked like he was running through treacle in comparison, and he had no answers as Economics sauntered on by.

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Haggas was watching on from afar in Newmarket, no doubt pondering his next move, and he said he is going to consult Bahraini owner Sheikh Isa before any decisions are made.

Haggas said: “The whole point of taking him out of the Derby was I didn’t think it was the right track and the right race for him at this stage of his career.

“He’s a great big, immature horse. And I stick by that.

“I haven’t spoken on the subject to Sheikh Isa and his advisors so that might change.

“We discussed it at length when we talked about the Derby. Winning the Derby is of course everyone’s dream, we all want to win it, but it takes a type.

“Maybe we’re wrong and maybe after I’ve talked to His Highness he’ll say I’d like him to run in the Derby, in which case we’ll run him. But we’ll see. 

“He’s also by Night Of Thunder so although he looked like he’ll stay an extra furlong and a half, it’s not a certainty.

“It’s a win and you’re in for the Irish Derby so that could be an option for him if we wanted to go a mile and a half.”

Bluestocking also breezed home to the tune of six lengths in the Group 2 Middleton Stakes.

She had rattled the crossbar in a host of big races last summer, and she made light work of the opposition on her return to action.

Winning trainer Ralph Beckett said: “You’d like to think that she is capable of Group 1 on that form, she was very impressive today.

“I didn’t think she looked her best today and she will probably come on a good bit for the race today. She is entered in every big race you can imagine, but I’ve no idea where we’ll go yet.”

And Mick Appleby’s pocket rocket Big Evs returned with a bang in the Listed Westow Stakes.

He ended last year with a famous win at the Breeders’ Cup and that is his long-term aim again – with a stop at Royal Ascot in the King Charles III Stakes along the way.

Appleby said: “You never can be sure if they’ll train on from two to three, but we have been pleased with him on the gallops and he’s won nicely.

“The King Charles Stakes at Ascot looks the obvious race now, but Del Mar is his big aim this season.”

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