Charlie Appleby and William Buick combine for yet another big winner as Templegate's NAP enters Derby picture

GODOLPHIN dream team Charlie Appleby and William Buick continue to make the Flat game look easy.

Their stunning start to the 2022 season showed no signs of slowing down at Epsom after Nahanni’s pillar-to-post win in the Blue Riband Trial.

The improving colt, who was Templegate's NAP, booked his ticket to the Cazoo Derby on June 4 with his third straight success, bolstering Godolphin's already powerful Classic hand.

The pair have the 2000 Guineas favourite Native Trail to look forward to next weekend, plus lively Oaks contender Life Of Dreams.

And they also have a strong team of older horses, spearheaded by Hurricane Lane and Adayar.

The latter bagged the Derby last summer, and Nahanni is a 25-1 shot with Coral to follow in his stablemate’s footsteps.

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He was made to battle for a half-length victory over Grand Alliance yesterday, but he has proven he handles the track and he will be happier over a mile and a half.

Buick said: “It was a nice performance and he has come on again. He was back down in trip from his win at Leicester but he handled the track well.

“He got on the front-end and he was very comfortable up there.

"I liked his performance as he saw them all off and handled the track which is key.

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"He is a horse who stays very well and every time something came to challenge him he found extra, which is always pleasing.

“It was the most competitive race he has ever encountered and he had to fight for it, so he has learnt plenty.”

Appleby later confirmed: "The likelihood is we will now head straight to the Derby with him.”

Nahanni’s win means Buick and Appleby have combined to win 13 races from just 21 runners so far this month.

With each passing day, the bookies continue to trim Appleby’s odds in the Flat trainers championship.

He is now 4-6 with William Hill to defend his crown having been 5-2 a fortnight ago, while Buick is 4-11 to win his first jockeys' title.

The Derby betting is headed by Aidan O'Brien's Luxembourg, who is top-price 7-2 with Paddy Power and Betfair.

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