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Published: 10:53 | 27/5/16

Heffernan rates Ranger's chances

Seamie Heffernan feels US Army Ranger could be the pick of Aidan O'Brien's Investec Derby string.

After an impressive win on his debut at the Curragh in April, the son of Galileo jumped to the head of the market for Investec Derby and had been expected to underline his credentials in the MBNA Chester Vase.

While he did win the Group 3 he only had a short head in hand of stable companion Port Douglas and will have to improve to claim Derby honours on Saturday week.

Heffernan, however, believes O'Brien will have him primed for Epsom and has suggested he could be the pick of the Ballydoyle runners.

"If I was to sum up our Derby team, I'd say I've been impressed and disappointed by them all. US Army Ranger is still very unexposed and nobody knows how good he might be," Heffernan told the Racing Post.

"We don't dip the tank at home. Aidan trains in a way that makes all the horses feel like champions. He saves that little bit for them to show what they're made of on the track."

As well as US Army Ranger, O'Brien also has Beacon Rock, Bravery, Deauville, Idaho, Port Douglas, Shogun, The Gurkha and Minding entered in the blue riband.

Heffernan does not know which horse he will be on in the race but will be happy to ride whatever O'Brien picks for him.

"It's a great position to be in that decisions are made for me and I know Aidan is always on my side and fighting my corner," Heffernan said.

"He always does the best he can for me. He'll put me on the horse he thinks suits my style best."

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