Having previously impressed on the turf a couple of years ago, Ed Dunlop is looking for Red Verdon to produce similar form at tomorrow’s All-Weather Championships.
The five-year-old had a particularly impressive 2016 campaign, finishing sixth in the Investec Derby at Epsom Downs, fourth in the Irish Derby and runner-up in the Grand Prix de Paris — all Group 1 races.
The son of Lemon Drop Kid has also strung together some positive results on the All-Weather of late, winning on two of his three starts since October at Kempton and Lingfield.
And now he has the £150,000 Betway All-Weather Marathon Championships Conditions Stakes in his sights, with Newmarket handler Dunlop hopeful he will impress on his first appearance over two miles.
“At this stage, the Marathon on Good Friday is the aim for Red Verdon,” said the La Grange Stables trainer.
“All is good with the horse at the moment and we are very happy with him.
“You can never be sure a horse is going to stay until you try, but Red Verdon has a good temperament, which will give him the chance to stay the extra distance in the Marathon.”
Red Verdon is currently the 3/1 second favourite to win the contest, with other Newmarket involvement potentially coming from James Fanshawe’s Lord George and the David Simcock-trained Curbyourenthusiasm.
Lord George won at Kempton on January 6, before finishing fourth to Watersmeet in the 32Red Conditions Stakes at the same track six weeks later.
Curbyourenthusiasm was second on that occasion and has not been victorious since clinching the Your Breeders’ Cup Guide At attheraces.com/breederscup Handicap at Chelmsford in November 2016.