Epsom Derby News: Charles Hills still wants knockout blow from Sonny Liston

Charlie Hills' has a useful three-year-old in Sonny Liston with the Lambourn trainer having faith his charge can roll with the punches and make the Cazoo Epsom Derby on June 4.

Sonny Liston is not on the ropes when it comes to a Cazoo Epsom Derby run says trainer Charles Hills.

The horse is named after the former World Heavweight Boxing Champion Sonny Liston, who famously fought against Cassius Clay (Mohammad Ali)

A third behind Star Of India in the Listed Dee Stakes at Chester has given Lambourn trainer Hills confidence that his Lawman colt can put on a show in the Epsom Classic on June 4.

But the three-year-old hasn't got his head in front in his last two races, finishing fourth in the Feildon Stakes at Newmarket and then third on the Roodee on May 5.

However, that third at Chester saw Sonny Liston staying on for third over one mile, two and a half furlongs, suggesting the one miles four of the Derby may suit.

Hills believes the jaunt round the imposing turns of Chester may be good preparation for the Derby and so a trip to Epsom is still on the cards, for which Sonny Liston is available at a general 66/1

Hills said: "We were really pleased with him. Nothing really went right round the track, but he will have learnt a lot from the race and experience.

"He showed a really good turn of foot to get into the position he did, so we'll see. We're still in the Derby and we're seriously considering that. He got the trip well, we just didn't really get a good crack at it and the horse probably learnt more than we did."

While talking about the Derby, Hills also gave an upadte on his sprinters Equilateral and Khaadem.

Hills said: "We've been really pleased with Equilateral actually, his work has been looking good. He's a fast horse and we're more likely to take up the Achilles Stakes (May 28) at Haydock.

"Khaadem, I'd just like to spread his races out a bit more, so we'll wait for Royal Ascot now. He's a fast horse now, he's got some great pace and a high cruising speed."

The Epsom Derby is considered the premier English Classic and takes places on Epsom Downs on Saturday, June 4.

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