Ban rules Kinane out of Irish Derby

Michael Kinane's Irish Derby hoodoo continues after the Royal Ascot stewards yesterday slapped a four-day ban on him, thus ruling…

Michael Kinane's Irish Derby hoodoo continues after the Royal Ascot stewards yesterday slapped a four-day ban on him, thus ruling Kinane out of next weekend's Curragh classic. Kinane finished second on Kilimanjaro in the King Edward VII Stakes but the stewards found he had ridden carelessly on the turn in. Kilimanjaro dramatically squeezed up the Darryl Holland-ridden Fruits Of Love who in turn squeezed up Courteous.

Kilimanjaro was allowed keep his second placing to the impressive Royal Anthem but although Kinane will not appeal the ban, he was clearly not happy about it.

"I feel hard done by. They (the stewards) have had their eyes closed all week and now they pick on me," he said.

Kinane has finished runner up three times in Ireland's premier classic and got off Dermot Weld's Zagreb before that colt won the Derby in 1996. Kinane was scheduled to ride Weld's Make No Mistake this time in a bid to win the only Irish classic missing from his CV but now misses out.


Royal Anthem will also miss out on the Curragh and will wait instead for the King George. "He has tremendous potential and will be even better this year," said his trainer Henry Cecil.

Unraced as a juvenile, Royal Anthem quickly stamped himself as a potential top-notcher with victories over 10 furlongs at Newbury and Newmarket.

Moved up to 12 furlongs for yesterday's Group Two contest he made further progress, pulling away in good style under Kieren Fallon to score by two lengths.

Cecil admitted: "Royal Anthem was backward last year and we couldn't train him. It was only in April and May this year that he started to show a little.

"But he managed to break the track record at Newmarket over a distance that was too short for him."

It was a first winnerless Ascot for Kinane since 1991 and the Irish couldn't add to San Sebastian's win on Tuesday nor to a total of five placings over the week. Stage Affair, who sweated up badly, did best with a fourth in the Hardwicke behind the surprise winner Posidonas.

Swain was a disappointing third. David Hanley's Lidanna ran eighth in the Kings Stand behind Bolshoi who completed a wonderful day for Lancashire trainer Jack Berry and jockey Carl Lowther. The pair had earlier won the Wokingham with Selhurstpark Flyer who for the second year running made much of the running to land the £90,000 cavalry charge.

Bolshoi in contrast was stone last at half way but picked up remarkably to sweep home ahead of Lochangel and Lord Kintyre.

"He used to be a thief but is now so honest," enthused Berry who confessed he had forgotten to declare blinkers for the reformed Bolshoi. It was Lowther's 27th winner of the season and Berry's 60th. Theatreworld could only finish sixth in the marathon Queen Alexandra Stakes but appropriately the winner was Frankie Dettori on Dovedon Star. It gave the Italian his seventh winner of the festival equalling a record shared by Lester Piggott and Pat Eddery.

Dovedon Star's success was a red letter day for first-season trainer Andrew Kelleway. "This is my first winner on grass and a dream come true," he said.

Brian O'Connor

Brian O'Connor

Brian O'Connor is the racing correspondent of The Irish Times. He also writes the Tipping Point column