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Champions Series Dark Horses for 2018: Herculean

22 Feb 2018

In the second of a weekly series we consider a son of Frankel who shone on his sole start last year

In the second of a weekly series we consider a son of Frankel who shone on his sole start last year

Horse: HERCULEAN

Form: 1 Trainer: Roger Charlton

Frankel has wasted little time making an impact as a stallion with such as Cracksman and Eminent being among his first crop.

That pair came close to providing him with a first Classic success – they finished third and fourth, respectively, in the Investec Derby – and it can only be a matter of time before he can add that accolade to his already burgeoning CV.

Herculean is among his progeny who could fly the flag for him in the 2018 QIPCO British Champions Series.

The chestnut will be easy to identify in the paddock with his large blaze and four white feet but he is among our Dark Horses for more than just his appearance.

We only saw him in action once last season but he created a deep impression when winning a maiden over seven furlongs on soft ground at Ascot in early September.

Sent off the 11-10 favourite, his supporters would have had a few anxious moments when Ryan Moore niggled him along in fourth about three furlongs out but Herculean stayed on powerfully to beat Wadilsafa, another promising son of Frankel, by a length and three quarters without being hard ridden.

A couple of his pursuers subsequently won and the third, Archie McKellar, went on to be beaten less than two lengths in Group 3 company.

Herculean is a general 25-1 for the QIPCO 2000 Guineas at Newmarket on May 6 and is available at 33-1 for the Investec Derby at Epsom on June 3.

His breeding points to the Derby trip being a big question mark – his dam, African Rose, won the Sprint Cup and his sister, Fair Eva, has shown her best form at up to a mile – but a mile should be well within his compass.