Tue 4 Jun 2019
PINATUBO (Shamardal), pictured, landed the first race of the Investec Derby Festival when justifying Even-money favouritism in the £60,000 Investec Woodcote EBF Conditions Race.
Trained by Charlie Appleby and ridden by James Doyle, the two-year-old son of Shamardal stumbled slightly out of the stalls and raced in last in the six-furlong contest as the Mark Johnston-trained Misty Grey (11/4) set a stern gallop under Franny Norton.
However, the Godolphin-owned colt knuckled down gamely in the home straight to master the long-time leader inside the final furlong, eventually scoring by a length and a half from the staying-on Oh Purple Reign (4/1), trained by Richard Hannon, who took second.
Royal Ascot looks the next port of call for Pinatubo who could head for either the six-furlong G2 Coventry Stakes (Tuesday, June 18) or the Listed Chesham (Saturday, June 22) over seven furlongs.
Winning trainer Appleby said: “James just said he got a bit upset in the gates there and just slipped on the way out.
“It wasn’t ideal, but I always thought he wouldn’t have the early toe for them as they were going to go a decent gallop.
“At one stage I was concerned as when Mark Johnston horses lead from the front like that, they are difficult to peg back. The leader went some decent fractions there and I was hopeful he would come back to the field, which he did.
“Once James moved Pinatubo down the hill in the straight, he stayed on strongly. It was a pleasing performance. He qualifies for the Chesham after winning this race and he does his best work at the finish, so stepping him up in trip would not worry me at all.
“We’ll make the entries for the Coventry or the Chesham. We’ll see how he comes out of this and then make a plan.”
Betway make Pinatubo a 7/1 shot for the CoventryStakes at Royal Ascot on the back of this run.
2.00pm Investec EBF Woodcote Stakes results:
1 Pinatubo (Godolphin) Charlie Appleby 2-9-05 James Doyle Evs fav
2 Oh Purple Green (Team Wallop) Richard Hannon 2-9-05 Sean Levey 4/1
3 Misty Grey (Barbara & Alick Richmond) Mark Johnston 2-9-05 Franny Norton 11/4