Deira Mile enhances Derby prospects with Windsor win

Owner Ahmad Al Shaik is again dreaming of Derby glory after Deira Mile broke his duck in routine fashion at Windsor.

Dubai Mile was ninth in the Epsom Classic last year carrying the Green Team Racing colours and hopes are high of an improved placing this term.

The Owen Burrows-trained Deira Mile remained a maiden following four runs as a juvenile, mainly due to fluffing his lines when sent off as a 1-5 favourite at Chelmsford.

However, he showed his potential when beaten less than three lengths in fourth behind Ancient Wisdom in the Group One Futurity at Doncaster and built on that by justifying short odds of 4-9 at Windsor under Jim Crowley.

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Asked about Derby aspirations, his owner told Sky Sports Racing: “It is in my blood and my sons’ blood, not just me. We need to go to the Derby and one day we will win – if not me, one of my sons.

“He is still green but Jim Crowley said the further he goes, the better he will be.

“We have only 40 days now until Epsom, I don’t think we have time to run him again, so I will discuss with the trainer about going straight to Epsom and I think he will be fine.”

Burrows added: “He’s a big lad and mentally, he’s still quite immature. He had the four runs last year, but he is still a big baby.

“The plan was to try and find as easy a race as we could and it worked out perfectly. He’s ended up hitting the front a little sooner than ideal, as he gets to the front and just thinks ‘right, what do I do now?’ But he’s had a race.”

Crowley pulled alongside main market rival Castle In The Sand between the final two furlongs of the 10-furlong contest and Deira Mile responded to his urgings to prevail by four lengths.

The jockey said: “It’s the first time I’ve ridden him, but I saw him at Chelmsford last year and I think when he hits the front, he just loses concentration a little bit and he did it there, hence why I gave him a smack, because I just don’t want him to get in the habit of doing it.

“The race sort of fell apart at the two-furlong pole and I could have quite easily stayed upsides on the bridle, but he probably wouldn’t have learnt an awful lot.

“But he is learning, he’s going to progress and he stays well – he’s a lovely type of horse and he was entitled to win that race.

“His two-year-old form was very good at the back-end and I suggested to Owen we could possibly put a set of cheekpieces on him, especially in a better race where horses take him further.

“Like I said, he stays very well and there will be some lovely races for him through the summer.”

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