Mark Johnston’s colt keeps improving and although he is not entered in the Derby, he could be supplemented after winning one of the vital trials for the Classic on the Knavesmire
PERMIAN threw his hat into the Derby ring with a game win in the Betfred Dante Stakes at York on Thursday.
Mark Johnston’s colt, who will need to be supplemented for the Classic at Epsom, also boosted the form of Cracksman who he was runner-up to in the Epsom Derby Trial.
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The pair could meet again at Epsom after Permian showed a good attitude to hold off the challenges of Benbatl and Crystal Ocean.
Johnston said of the Sheikh Hamdan bin Mohammed Al Maktoum-owned winner: “I’m delighted to have a live chance in the Derby.
“John Ferguson made the decision to supplement him for this, but when the rain came, we thought our chance had gone. We spoke to John and he said we’ve paid 12 grand to put him in, so we’ll run him, even if it’s a bog.
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“He’s clearly progressing, but I can’t say we weren’t fearing Cracksman coming here. He looks to have come on a lot with each run, but I’m sure Cracksman will have come on for his run, too.
“I wasn’t thinking of the Derby a few weeks ago, but you could see from two out today he was going to win.
“Epsom obviously holds no fears for us and I can’t remember my last Derby runner.
“As John said to me before the race, in the Dante you find out if you’re a Derby horse and we’ve got one.”