Black Bear Island
Black Bear Island became a real live Derby Contender for 2009 after he brilliantly won the Dante Stakes which is considered by many to be the premier Derby Trial in recent years. That win was a surprise for many as he was considered the second string for the Aidan O'Brien team as Freemantle was also in the race. Freemantle led the race from the front for most of the trip but Black Bear Island came screaming past him as the line approached and he looked to travel really well that day at York.
Prior to the win in the Dante, Black Bear Island had had some decent results but didn't set the world alight with his displays which was the reason for Johnny Murtagh turning down the ride in favour of Freemantle. He is a horse with a good pedigree as he is the full brother to High Chaparral who was a winner of many grade 1 races. On his form at York the bookies clipped Black Bear Island right in for The 2009 Derby and if he produces another similar display at Epsom he is sure to go close. Ryan Moore will be onboard on Saturday on what is quite possibly the Aidan O'Brien No.3 but he looks a top horse after that win in The Dante.