Unbeaten Camelot wins English Derby

Favorite Camelot kept his unbeaten record intact by winning the English Derby on Saturday.

Queen Elizabeth II attended Epsom racecourse, south of London, at the start of her Diamond Jubilee festivities.

Aidan O’Brien’s 2000 Guineas winner, which was sent off as the 8-13 favorite, completed the English Classic double by winning the race by five lengths from Main Sequence.

”I was a bit worried as he didn’t come down the hill at all,” said O’Brien’s 19-year-old son, Joseph, who rode Camelot.

”He didn’t handle the track that well, so he did well to win. He’s a very special horse, and I’m just very fortunate to be on his back. I owe a big thanks to the owners and everyone in the yard.”

O’Brien was happy to sit toward the rear for much of the 1-1/2-mile race and then begin to make headway on the outside of the field rounding the home turn.

For a moment, it appeared his stablemate Astrology had stolen a march on his rivals, but Camelot mowed him down heading toward the final furlong to finish strong.

The David Lanigan-trained Main Sequence narrowly denied O’Brien a one-two, getting up on the line to edge out Astrology.

O’Brien has now saddled the winner of all four classics run in Britain this season.

Now Camelot could go for the British Triple Crown, by adding a victory in the St. Leger at Doncaster Racecourse in September.

Not since Nijinsky in 1970 has a colt won the 2000 Guineas, Derby and St. Leger.

”You can’t even dream of days like this,” Aidan O’Brien said. ”I was always happy. I know his (Joseph’s) body language by now, and he looked confident. . . . We’ll give the Triple Crown a lot of thought and the boys will make a decision and do whatever is best for the horse. The Triple Crown would be incredible.”

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