William Haggas was delighted after Derby hopeful Young Rascal won the Centennial Celebration – MBNA Chester Vase at Chester.
The 57-year-old Newmarket handler watched as jockey James Doyle guided the three-year-old colt through a gap between Ispolini and Dee Ex Bee to snatch the win by a half length on Wednesday afternoon.
And as he plots a first Derby win since 1996 with Shaamit, Haggas has high hopes for Young Rascal ahead of the Group 1 Classic at Epsom on June 2.
He said: “That was why we came here, to get two races in one. He did well to win, as a few things went against him.
“He’s got a bit to offer, it’s hard for a horse who has only run once at two, they’ve got to learn quick. This is not a straightforward track, he’s a green horse and he had plenty to overcome, so with that in mind he’s doing well.
“The Derby favourite (Saxon Warrior) looks pretty impressive, but you should never be scared of one horse and we’re entitled to run. We’ll see what happens at Lingfield and York (Derby trials) now.”
He added: “My only concern would be if the ground got very quick, but Epsom do a very good job there now with the ground.
“It’s about time I had another chance in the Derby. It’s a long time since Shaamit, I haven’t had many runners and Storm The Stars was third so we’ll see on the day if this lad is fast enough.”