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A CAPE OF GOOD HOPE; Blanco heads for Dante test despite his weekend injury scare.

Byline: Garry Owen

UNBEATEN Cape Blanco is all set to advertise his Invesco Derby chances at York on Thursday despite suffering a slight setback at the weekend.

Still available at 14-1 for the Epsom showpiece, the unbeaten son of Galileo is currently in bandages after picking up a slight nick on his heel.

Aidan O'Brien, who has won the race twice in the past five years with Septimus and Black Bear Island, said: "He did the damage on Sunday but he seems fine today and the plan is to run in the Dante.

"He won three from three last year and shows loads of speed. But he is lazy in the way he races.

"If you let the reins go loose then he goes to sleep during a race and it will be interesting to see what he does."

Aviate may replace Timepiece as Henry Cecil's main hope to land a ninth Investec Oaks if the filly maintains her unbeaten record intomorrow's Tattersalls Musidora Stakes.

Both are owned by Prince Khalid Abdullah but with Timepiece suffering her second defeat of the on Saturday, Aviate impressed at Ascot in April and her Epsom odds of 20-1 could tumble if she does the business again.

Among her seven Knavesmire rivals are Aidan O'Brien's Cabaret, Sir Michael Stoute-trained Eleanora Duse and Pretty Polly Stakes runner-up Red Fantasy, trained by Barry Hills.

Mark Johnston has decided to run UEA Oaks second Bikini Babe instead of his Pretty Polly winner Marie de Medici.

York's first day's action of the year also features Aussie speedster Starspangledbanner making his northern hemisphere debut in the Duke Of York Blue Square Stakes.

The four-year-old, one of the 12 declarations for the Group Two dash, left for Aidan O'Brien's yard after finishing third in the Group One Newmarket Handicap at Flemington in March.

Looking ahead at Saturday and Paco Boy is likely to face a small field for the totesport.com Lockinge Stakes, a race in which he came fourth 12 month ago.

Richard Hannon's classy fiveyear- old went on to land the Queen Anne Stakes at Royal Ascot and among his eight possible rivals are Lord Shanakill, Jersey Stakes winner Ouqba, Prince Of Dance and The Cheka.

Mark Tompkins has mapped out the rest of the season for his Chester Vase winner Ted Spread.

He is set to tackle the Investec Derby before being prepared for a tilt at the Ladbrokes St Leger by running in the Great Voltigeur at York in August.

Tompkins said: "The boys who own him are very enthusiastic and I think we will go to Epsom. "

Tricky racing today and we're going to Yarmouth for the nap which is Eshtyaag (3.50), who was very green when runner-up on his debut at Kempton.

CAPTION(S):

O'BRIEN: Weekend scare HANNON: Paco chance
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Title Annotation:Sport
Publication:Daily Record (Glasgow, Scotland)
Date:May 11, 2010
Words:467
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