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US Army Ranger just held on to deny stable companion Port Douglas in the MBNA Chester Vase.
Despite having raced just once in his career, the son of Galileo was favourite with some bookmakers for the Investec Derby but he will need to improve if he is to land the blue riband on June 4.
Port Douglas attempted to make all under Seamie Heffernan but looked beaten when Ryan Moore sent US Army Ranger to the front in the home straight. The early pacesetter rallied and came close to denying the 4-11 favourite only for the finish line to arrive too soon.
"He's still very babyish, he travelled really nicely and I just wanted to teach him," moore said.
"When he got to the front he had a bit of a look, as the other horse came back he was just going to do enough.
"He's a baby, it's only his second run and he made his debut five weeks ago - he'll learn plenty.
"I was probably a bit too kind to him when he first went there and he's probably switched off on me.
"He didn't know how to fight and he'll learn a lot from that. Aidan's other horse isn't a bad horse, he's a Group Two winner carrying a penalty - they are both decent horses."