Robert Havlin to replace Callum Shepherd on Derby hopeful Ambiente Friendly

Robert Havlin has been booked to partner one of Britain's leading Epsom Derby fancies Ambiente Friendly.

Jockey - ROBERT HAVLIN Picture: Racing and Sports

The James Fanshawe-trained colt Ambiente Friendly, who has been ridden by the in-demand Callum Shepherd on both outings this season, burst onto the Epsom Derby scene with a facile success in the Lingfield Trial last time out.

Although ridden with self-confidence by Shepherd on his last start, owners Tim and Bill Gredley have instead opted to use the "more experienced" rider Robert Havlin in their bid to claim Derby glory on the first day of June.

Havlin, who partnered Audience to a front-running Group 1 Lockinge success at Newbury last weekend, has had three rides in the Epsom Classic but failed to finish better than seventh in previous outings.

The Scottish-born rider partnered James Fanshawe's colt in a routine canter on Wednesday morning and is understandably looking forward to the opportunity on Ambiente Friendly, who is a 4/1 chance with race sponsors Betfred.

Havlin told the PA News Agency: "It was a lovely surprise to pick the ride up and obviously I've got a lot of sympathy for Callum, I've been in that situation myself, as have plenty of other people,"

"Unfortunately, in this game, it happens from the top to the bottom and somebody's good luck is always someone else's bad luck.

"My main interest now is to find out as much about the horse as possible before next Saturday.

"He's a lovely horse, you can feel he's got class about him. He takes hold of the bit, I know he runs in a ring bit, but it's handy in a race of this nature because you can get a position.

"His profile is good, he's ultra-progressive. He obviously needed the run in the Feilden (when fourth) like every Newmarket horse did at that meeting, but you'd have to be impressed with the way he came down the hill, cornered and then picked up when asked at Lingfield.

"He ticks a lot of boxes, he has less questions to answer than some, he ticked nearly every box in one day. He's lightly-raced, a late-maturing type and his best days are still in front of him."

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