Indian Derby Build-up: 20 runners to vie for Indian horse racing's top prize

Updated: Jan 28, 2020, 11:20 IST | Prakash Gosavi | Mumbai

If all the 20 horses at this stage are in the final line up, this will be one of the most populated version of the Indian Derby in recent years, as the maximum limit for the Mahalaxmi racetrack is capped at 22 runners.

Representation picture
Representation picture

The Royal Western India Turf Club (RWITC) yesterday announced handicaps for the biggest racing event in the country, the Kingfisher Ultra Indian Derby (Gr 1) which will feature as prime attraction of the two-day racing bonanza (Sat & Sun, Feb 1 & 2) at the Mahalaxmi racecourse. The fact that 20 four-year-old horses--a dozen of them outstation challengers--are left in the fray makes one thing very clear: the 2019 Derby is being looked upon as a very open race, prompting almost every decent horse's connections to take their chance to take a shot at the ultimate honour the sport of horse racing offers to only one champion equine every year. If all the 20 horses at this stage are in the final line up as they are expected to be, this will be one of the most populated version of the Indian Derby in recent years, as the maximum permissible limit for the Mahalaxmi racetrack is capped at 22 runners.

As many as four of them--Armaity, Northern Alliance, Thailand and Top Notch--have entered to run by paying a hefty final entry fee. Among the line up are winners of almost all the regional Derbies: Trafalgar (Kolkata), Royal Crystal (Hyderabad), Sir Supremo (Chennai) & War Hammer (Bangalore).

A notable absentee, on whom many including yours truly were pinning their hopes, will be the Pesi Shroff-trained Alexi who is reported to have developed some issue at the last moment which ruled out his participation.

Below, the complete line-up at the handicaps stage:

Horse Name | Pedigree (Sire – Dam) | Trainer

1 CONSIGLIORI | Air Support - Caprese | L V R Deshmukh
2 DADDY'S PRIDE | Oath - Cannon Jet) | Subhag Singh
3 IMPAVID | Air Support - Polenta (IRE) | A Mangalorkar
4 JUSTIFIED | Multidimensional - Secret Garden | Imtiaz A Sait
5 LIGHTNING BOLT | Excellent Art – Shamaal | L V R Deshmukh
6 NORTHERN ALLIANCE | Gusto - Allonia | Neil B Devaney
7 ROYAL CRYSTAL | Western Aristocrat - Sparkling Crystal (IRE) | A Mangalorkar
8 SIR SUPREMO | Speaking of Which - Cool Mover | S Narredu
9 SOUTHERN RULER | Saamidd – Farha (USA) | S Ganapathy
10 SULTAN SULEIMAN | Arazan - Saffron Dancer (IRE) | Altaf Hussain
11 TOPNOTCH | Top class - Elzaam | Shafiq Khan
12 TRAFALGAR | Western Aristocrat - Bluegrass Phenom (USA) | J E McKeown
13 TROUVAILLE | Surfrider - Highly Fashionable | S K Sunderji
14 VICTORIOUS SERMON | Whatsthescript - Crystal | Vishal Gaikwad
15 WAR HAMMER | Air Support - Soviet Lake | Prasanna Kumar
16 WIZARD OF STOCKS | Speaking of Which - Margarita Rita (USA) | P Shroff
17 ARMAITY | Multidimensional - Hills and Stars | P Shroff
18 JULIETTE | Musketier – Gimmesumsugar (USA) | Karthik G
19 THAILAND | Top Class - Immortal Story | A Mangalorkar
20 WELL CONNECTED | Arazan - Guest Connections | S Padmanabhan

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