05/10/2007 12:00AM

Soldier of Fortune prevails


Soldier of Fortune earned his ticket to the Epsom Derby with a victory in Thursday's Group 3, $130,000 Chester Vase, but he had to pull out all the stops to run down Arabian Gulf for the victory.

The winner in his April 8 seasonal debut of the Group 2 Prix Noailles at Longchamp, Soldier of Fortune, trained by Aidan O'Brien, was expected to have a much easier time of it in the Vase as the odds-on favorite facing just three opponents. Under jockey Michael Kinane, he could get past Arabian Gulf only at the line, scoring a short head victory. He ran the 1 1/2 miles, 66 yards on good ground in 2:35.24.

The Derby prep scene moves to Lingfield Park on Saturday for the Group 3, $120,000 Lingfield Derby Trial at 1 7/16 miles. Maiden winner Many Volumes will meet Mythical Kid, a half-brother to French 1000 Guineas and French Oaks winner Divine Proportions.

* Trainer Jim Bolger announced Thursday that Finsceal Beo, winner of the 1000 Guineas at Newmarket on Sunday, will be wheeled right back this Sunday in the French 1000 Guineas, at Longchamp.