Desert Crown’s Victory Puts Sir Michael Stoute Back in the Spotlight
Sir Michael Stoute is one of the greatest horse racing trainers in the history of Flat racing around the world. The 76-year-old has been Champion Trainer ten times in the UK and he has looked after the likes of Shergar, Authorized and Workforce.
Twelve years after his last success in the race, Desert Crown gave Stoute a sixth victory in the Derby at Epsom. With that British Classic win, the unbeaten colt also puts the legendary trainer in the mix for some of the leading middle-distance European races this season.
Desert Crown’s next task is likely to be the King George VI And Queen Elizabeth Stakes where the son of Nathaniel is the +163 favorite in the horse racing odds for the Ascot contest. The three-year-old has shown that he has the stamina and speed to be very successful over one-mile-and-four-furlongs.
The Freemason Lodge trainer has not had a horse of Desert Crown’s ability for several years. He spoke very highly of the colt earlier in the season, particularly after he prevailed in the Dante Stakes at York. That confidence has been justified with a very impressive performance in the Derby.
Stoute will know exactly how good his colt is after he tests himself in open-age company at Ascot. Desert Crown will be looking to replicate what Adayar achieved in 2021 by completing the Derby and King George double.
If the unbeaten colt proves he can match the leading middle-distance horses in Europe, an obvious target would then be the Prix de l’Arc de Triomphe, a race Stoute won in 2010 with Workforce.
Stoute Has Not Been Afraid to Test His Horses at The Breeders’ Cup
Although it is in Europe that the majority of Stoute’s success has come throughout his glittering career, he is one of the European trainers who has supported the Breeders’ Cup meeting the most.
Stoute had his maiden Breeders’ Cup winner in 1996 when Pilsudski won the Breeders’ Cup Turf. He has since won that race four times, with Kalanisi scoring in 2000 and Conduit prevailing in 2008 and 2009.
The Barbados-born trainer has been renowned for having some excellent fillies in his yard over the years. That is reflected in his record in the Breeders’ Cup Filly & Mare Turf. Islington, Dank and Queen’s Tank have all won the US race while under his stewardship.
Stoute added another Breeders’ Cup race to his CV in 2018 when Expert Eye beat a strong field to land the Breeders’ Cup Mile. Under the hands of Frankie Dettori, the pair powered home strongly to get up just under a length.
Desert Crown may be the next Stoute runner to take the trip across to North America. His target would likely be the Breeders’ Cup Turf, a race over one-mile-and-four-furlongs. High Chaparral was the last Derby winner to prevail in that contest in the same year in 2002.
Whatever Desert Crown goes on to achieve this season, Stoute will be very thankful that the horse has helped put him back in the mix at the highest level in the sport.