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Irish Derby winner Westover set to stay in training at four

Wed 5 Oct 2022

Westover looks set to stay in training as a four-year-old following his sixth-placed finish in the Prix de l’Arc de Triomphe.

Having started the campaign with victory in the Classic Trial, the Ralph Beckett-trained colt was somewhat an unlucky loser when suffering a troubled passage to finish third to Desert Crown in the Derby at Epsom.

He gained Classic redemption when bolting up in the Irish equivalent at the Curragh, but failed to sparkle in the hands of Colin Keane when sent off the 13-8 favourite for the King George at Ascot in July.

Given a 71-day summer break, Westover was reunited with Rob Hornby for his trip to Paris and his handler believes he at least matched his early-season levels when making his comeback – a performance that gives plenty of hope ahead of a likely four-year-old campaign.

“I thought he ran close to his Irish Derby run, if not his Derby run, on ground which perhaps didn’t play to his strengths and it was great to get him back on track and that close to what his best is,” said Beckett.

“He’s a big horse, he’s been growing through the year as well and he should improve from three to four.

“He’s come out of the race really well, I’m really pleased with him and the way he’s come out of it. We haven’t made any plans yet, but I’m sure we will.”

When asked if the Juddmonte-owned son of Frankel will be staying in training Beckett added: “Yes that looks like happening.”

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