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The 240th G1 Investec Derby - reaction from connections of runner-up Madhmoon plus press conference quotes, landmarks & sectional times

Article 1st June 2019 Epsom Downs

By Racenews

Madhmoon, trained by Kevin Prendergast in Ireland for owner/breeder Hamdan Al Maktoum, ran a terrific race to just hold on for second at 10/1 in the 240th running of the Investec Derby.
His 86-year-old handler commented: "He ran a very good race - we are very happy.
"I would love to have won, but we are very proud of the horse.
"It was a very good ride from Chris (Hayes) - he did nothing wrong, but the best horse won on the day."
Chris Hayes explained: I thought he was going to win at one point.
"He stumbled just after the road crossing by Tattenham Corner and that just lit him up.
"I was in front probably 50 yards sooner than I wanted, but the winner has won well." 
Angus Gold, Hamdan Al Maktoum's racing manager, commented: "I am thrilled - thrilled for all the team, for Kevin and those at home who have done a brilliant job with him.
"I never thought that he'd stay, but am absolutely delighted to be proved wrong. Chris said everything went right, except he stumbled and as a result he had to go a bit earlier than he wanted to.
"If you had said to me second was going to be the outcome today, I'd have taken this any day.
"The performance opens up options. We will have to see whether we stick at a mile and a half or we drop back to a mile and a quarter for a race like the Irish Champion Stakes. The Irish Derby obviously comes into it now."
Seamus Heffernan: "Anthony Van Dyck is an uncomplicated horse, I was always happy, I decided to go down the inside, I needed a bit of luck and he came back on the bridle and switched in.
"I got beaten on the favourite [Fame And Glory, 2009] one year, then came out the following and finished second on a 150/1 shot, Aidan's horses are capable of running above of what people think.
"It means a lot but I have been around good horses since I moved to Ballydoyle. They are all proper men there, if it doesn't go on to plan, they take it on the chin. That's the way it has always been."
MV Magnier: "The lads put a lot of thought into it, it is the most important race of the year, it is what we always strive for. I am just delighted for Seamus - he works so hard he really deserves it.
"Aidan was pretty strong on this horse, he is by Galileo and out of an Exceed And Excel mare and is half-brother to a Champion. Winning the Derby is everything, it is a great result. In fairness most of them ran a blinder."
Aidan O'Brien: "Obviously, we are so privileged to be a small part of this, all of these people that put so much in on a daily, weekly and yearly basis.  I can't tell you how delighted I am - they all came down the straight together and we still weren't second! it just goes to show how competitive it is, Kevin's horse ran an unbelievable race - he had his horse in unbelievable shape.
"I am so delighted for Seamus, and it is a dream come true to win any of these races. They are so tough to win every year. That is why we run so many horses, we always feel they are bred, reared and we try and keep them sound to compete in this race. It is the ultimate test in every way, it tests their speed, their stamina and then their mentality as well.
"John always says it is the ultimate test of the thoroughbred and that is why we come here and try and compete every year It is very tough and I can't tell you how privileged we are.
"Seamus is an unbelievable fella, he is a world-class jockey, always has been, we've known each other a long time, before we went to Ballydoyle we worked together. Seamus has ridden so many placed horses, so many big horses in so many races, won so many top races all over the world. Every day, day in and day out, he puts it all in, he is really experienced as a horseman and jockey he is second to none. And as a fella - we are so delighted for him."
Seamus Heffernan: "I was always confident! The best horse, if he has the speed, ideally I wanted to be two off the fence and three back, but I was two off the fence, then I was one off the fence and when Ryan took my position I was happy enough because I knew he'd take me wherever I wanted to go."
Heffernan continued: "I had to snatch up at the two pole and switch left, I was happy enough to take that inside path today, but I was always confident.
"Stall seven is a good place to be and it is a lucky number; it is a lucky number for this firm (Pour Moi won for Coolmore in 2011)."
"I am probably lucky I don't have the choice [about which horse I ride]! When you have to make the choice, if you get it right 51 per cent of time you are winning. There is no other yard in Ireland from which I would have gone around in the Derby 12 times. I am just happy to taking part on very well-bred horses."
Aidan O'Brien: "Obviously, everyone knows there has only been one Galileo and there probably will never be another. What he has done in 20 years since he won the Derby and what his colts have done and what his fillies are showing as broodmares is incredible, it is just a built-in thing with determination. As you saw with Seamus's horse today, their heads go down, it is just a very, very unusual trait with horses and we train a lot of horses every year and it is an inwardly thing in their minds and they just won't give up. It is just a very strange thing.
"Anthony Van Dyck is a very solid horse, he had very good form last year and we always thought he was going to be a middle-distance performer. He is the horse that John [Magnier] said to me he thought had the profile [to be a Derby horse].
"He ran at lots of tracks last year, he went to America and he had a real hard profile. There is nowhere to hide out there and anything could have happened. He has passed the ultimate test now and it is only his second run of the year.
"It is incredible to be in the position to be a record holder, we never thought we'd be in this position. We have to pinch ourselves everyday, we are working with the best people, with the most incredible horses with the unbelievable pedigrees and physiques, in an incredible facility. The lads put in so much day in and day out, they know more about the horses than we do. We are just in a very unique position and we are learning a lot from it.
"The lads will decide the next step as always, but we thought coming here that the Irish Derby will be the next step for the winner. We always go back to Ireland, it is a nice progression. The Irish Derby is a three-year-old only race and after that, they have to take on older horses."
The 2019 Investec Derby saw an all Irish-trained first six for the first time in the premier Classic's 240-year history - with Anthony Van Dyck beating Madhmoon, Japan, Broome, Sir Dragonet and Circus Maximus.
Aidan O'Brien, the winning trainer, was responsible for five of those six horses, the exception being Madhmoon, who is trained by 86-year-old Kevin Prendergast. O'Brien now becomes the joint most successful trainer in the Investec Derby on seven victories, sharing the title with Fred Darling, John Porter and Robert Robson.
Anthony Van Dyck is the third horse to win the Investec Derby from stall seven since starting stalls were introduced in the premier Classic in 1967.
Anthony Van Dyck won the Lingfield Derby Trial on his seasonal return last month and becomes the first winner of that trial to go on and triumph in the Investec Derby since High-Rise in 1998.
He is the 48th Investec Derby winner to be sired by a past Investec Derby victor. Anthony Van Dyck is by Galileo, winner of the 2001 Investec Derby, who is now responsible for four Investec Derby successes. This one follows on from Australia 2014, Ruler Of The World 2013, and New Approach 2008. Galileo thus joins Montjeu, Sir Peter Teazle, Cyllene, Waxy, and Blandford as the joint most successful sires in Derby history.
This is the eighth Investec Derby success for a Coolmore partnership, with Anthony Van Dyck owned by Sue Magnier, Michael Tabor and Derrick Smith. Coolmore partnerships already held the record as being the most successful owners in Derby history. The previous success came from Galileo 2001, High Chaparral 2002, Pour Moi 2011, Camelot 2012, Ruler Of The World 2013, Australia 2014, and Wings of Eagles 2017.
Investec Derby winning rider Seamie Heffernan has been banned for two days for careless riding.
46-year-old Heffernan, who partnered Anthony Van Dyck to success in Britain's premier Classic and richest race, was suspended for making a manoeuvre to his left, causing stable companion Circus Maximus to be taken off his intended line.
Please click HERE for sectional times on the 2019 Investec Derby 


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