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Throwback Thursday the brilliant HAWK WING Aidan's most dominant winner of the Eclipse 



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Promise gets going late to score on debut

 By Donal Murphy

Thu 30th Jun 2016, 18:25
Promise To Be True comes home in front under Seamie Heffernan
Promise To Be True comes home in front under Seamie Heffernan
(Healy Racing Photos)
Promise To Be True got going late on to take the opener at Tipperary, the Irish Stallion Farms EBF Fillies Maiden.

The Aidan O'Brien trained newcomer was sent off the 2/1 favourite (drifted from 6/4) for this two-year-old contest, and she was settled in rear by Seamie Heffernan.

The Galileo filly was pushed along from the three furlong pole, and was ridden with over a furlong to race.

She was soon switched right for room, and went from fourth to first in last the 150 yards, going on to score by a length.

Elizabeth Browning (13/2), who is also trained by Aidan O'Brien, finished second underAidan O'Brien, while Decisive Intent (6's to 4's) was a length and three parts back in third.

Aidan O'Brien said afterwards: "They are nice fillies and she (Promise To Be True) is very well bred. Seamus gave her a lovely ride, was kind on her and she will have learned a lot.

"She wasn't named in time and that's why she hasn't any big entries. Her name wasn't through in time to enter for the Moyglare but she'll step into something like the Debutante now.

"We liked the second going to Naas but she pulled a shoe and we think that is what happened to her. She came forward lovely from that race so we were very happy with that run too."

The winner is a full-sister to Maybe who won the Moyglare Stud Stakes at the Curragh in 2011, and was unbeaten in five starts as a two-year-old.

Additional reporting by Thomas Weekes


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Minding heads Matron entries

Thu 30th Jun 2016, 17:08
Minding
Minding
(Healy Racing Photos)
Aidan O'Brien's brilliant filly Minding heads 37 entries for the Coolmore Fastnet Rock Matron Stakes on the first day of Longines Irish Champions Weekend at Leopardstown on September 10.

The dual Classic winner added to her Group One tally when taking the Pretty Polly Stakes at the Curragh.

Her only defeat this term was to Jet Setting in the Irish 1,000 Guineas and the Adrian Keatley-trained filly has also been given an entry.

Minding is one of six possibles from the O'Brien stable, who have been successful just once, with Lillie Langtry in 2010, since the race became a Group One event in 2004.

Dermot Weld has entered the unbeaten Raymonda and Tanaza while Ger Lyons could be represented by last year's third Ainippe.

Willie McCreery, who saddled Fiesolana to win this event in 2014, has entered Devonshire, winner of the Lanwades Stud Stakes at the Curragh in May.

A strong overseas challenge sees four French-trained contenders and 10 British-trained fillies among the initial entries.

Jean-Claude Rouget has put in his last two winners of Royal Ascot's Coronation Stakes, Ervedya and Qemah.

Among the British possibles are John Gosden's highly-progressive Royal Ascot winner Persuasive and the Hugo Palmer-trained Hawksmoor, winner of the German 1000 Guineas.

Leopardstown chief executive Pat Keogh said: "The entries for the Group One Coolmore Fastnet Rock Matron Stakes represent the best of European fillies and should deliver another thrilling renewal of this exceptional race."



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O’Brien gives favourite The Gurkha Eclipse go-ahead


THE GURKHA will be declared on Thursday morning for Saturday's Group 1 Coral-Eclipse with trainer Aidan O'Brien confirming his intention to run the French 2,000 Guineas winner and St James's Palace Stakes runner-up against his elders.

The Gurkha could be backed at 13/8 on Tuesday morning but was no bigger than 5/4 by 6pm on Tuesday, while some firms took the decision to shorten the impressive French 2,000 Guineas winner to even-money.

O’Brien, who has five entries in the Eclipse, has yet to confirm that The Gurkha will run in Saturday’s contest but appears to be leaning towards letting the market leader take his chance.

Saturday’s Eclipse, which features two supplementary entries in the shape of Hawkbill and Countermeasure, will be the most valuable contest ever run at Sandown.

It may not be the most competitive race, though, according to bookmakers who report that The Gurkha is the only horse wanted by punters.

The course at Sandown is slowly recovering from the deluge of rain it received last week, which left the track waterlogged in places.

On Tuesday afternoon the soft places on the round course had disappeared and the going was described as good to soft, though unsettled weather is forecast for the next few days.



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An Irish Legend




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Cartier Racing Awards Media Release
 
for immediate release, Wednesday, June 29, 2016
 
Minding has a clear lead in the 2016 Cartier Racing Awards
 
The Irish Derby Festival, staged at the Curragh over the weekend of June 24 to 26, has prompted changes in the standings for the 2016 Cartier Racing Awards.
 
The 26th annual Cartier Racing Awards will be presented at a glittering ceremony before an invited audience of 300 at the Dorchester Hotel, London, England, on the evening of Tuesday, November 8, 2016.
 
The Cartier Racing Awards were established in 1991 to reward excellence in horseracing. There are eight equine awards, ranging from the Cartier Horse Of The Year to the Cartier Two-Year-Old Colt and Cartier Two-Year-Old Filly.
 
In addition, the Cartier/Daily Telegraph Award of Merit goes to the person or persons who, in the opinion of the special 16-strong Cartier Jury, has/have done the most for European racing and/or breeding either over their lifetime or within the past 12 months.
 
European horseracing's top awards are delivered through a tried and tested combination of points earned by horses in Pattern races (30%), combined at the end of season with the opinions of a panel of racing journalists (35%) and votes from readers of Racing Post and The Daily Telegraph plus Channel 4 Racing viewers (35%).
 
Ace filly Minding (144) annexed her third Group One contest this year with an easy success against her elders in the 10-furlong Sea The Stars Pretty Polly Stakes at the Curragh on June 26. She gained Classic victories in the QIPCO 1000 Guineas and the Investec Oaks previously and was an unlucky loser in the Tattersalls Irish 1,000 Guineas.
 
The Aidan O'Brien-trained filly, owned by a Coolmore partnership, now has a clear lead in the Cartier Horse Of The Year category as well at the Cartier Three-Year-Old Filly division.




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Timeform Global Rankings European Division Ballydoyle Spotlight & News Update





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Sad news that CUFF fractured a knee when finishing two lengths back in fifth in the Albany at Royal Ascot. She has now been retired. She looked to have major potential big loss for the team.





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The Gurkha can make it 6 




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MINDING - Queen of Ballydoyle




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A.P.O'Brien year by year stats updated




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A.P.O'Biren Career Stats Updated 




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Aidan closes the gap to 5




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5 star MINDING Joins the Ballydoyle Greats



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Minding

Minding: spearheaded a Pattern treble for Galileo on Sunday

 PICTURE: Patrick McCann (racingpost.com/photos

No sign of Galileo heading for the exit

IT MAY be all change in Europe after Thursday’s British referendum vote, but as far as the leading sires of 2016 goes, it’s business as usual.

Seven-time champion sire Galileo continues to dominate the leading European sires’ list, with the Coolmore stallion enjoying a fine season with 21 individual stakes winners up to Saturday.

As if to confirm his effectiveness, Galileo sired a Group-race treble at the Curragh yesterday with Minding, Sir Isaac Newton and Sword Fighter landing the Group 1 Pretty Polly Stakes, Group 3 International Stakes and Group 2 Curragh Cup respectively.

Second to Galileo in the standings is his half-brother Sea The Stars, the six-time Group 1 winner who is sire of dual Derby hero Harzand as well as Group 2 winners Across The Stars, Cloth Of Stars and Mekhtaal.The adaptability of the 18-year-old stallion has been well advertised by the performances of Minding, who led home a 1-2-3 for the stallion in the 1,000 Guineas before claiming the Oaks, Poule d’Essai des Poulains (French 2,000 Guineas) winner The Gurkha and Gold Cup hero Order Of St George, one of five winners at the royal meeting for the son of Sadler’s Wells.

Standing at Gilltown Stud for €125,000, the son of Cape Cross has been responsible for seven individual stakes winners and has a current winners to runners strike-rate of 48.91 per cent.

With his progeny having won 11 European stakes races and earned £1,831,447 in prize-money, Darley’s premier stallion Dubawi is third in the table.

The 14-year-old son of Dubai Millennium’s flagbearer this season has been the Roger Varian-trained Postponed, who has secured victories in the Coronation Stakes and Sheema Classic, although his largest prize-money contributor has been Prix du Jockey Club (French Derby) runner-up Zarak.

Fellow Darley stallion Shamardal has been represented with aplomb this season by the French-trained four-year-olds Dariyan, who claimed the Group 1 Prix Ganay, and Usherette, winner of all four of her starts this year with Group 2 victories most recently in the Dahlia Stakes and Duke of Cambridge Stakes.

These results, coupled with the European Group 2 successes of Royal Solitaire and Speedy Boarding, has helped the son of Giant’s Causeway accrue £1,418,439 in prize-money.

An unfamiliar name to many, dual US Grade 1 winner Victory Gallopmoved from WinStar Farm in Kentucky to the Jockey Club of Turkey in 2008 and appears on the list of leading European sires by prize-money by virtue of his progeny having earned £1,365,022.

Perennially among the leading sires of two-year-olds along with his half-brother Kodiac, this season has seen Invincible Spiritrepresented at the highest level by Clive Cox’s four-year-old colt Profitable, who landed the King’s Stand Stakes on the opening day of Royal Ascot.

The son of Green Desert stands at the Irish National Stud for an all-time high fee of €120,000 with his progeny having accumulated £1,360,386 to date this season.

Having already sired a dual French Classic winner in 2014 Poule d’Essai des Pouliches (French 1,000 Guineas) and Prix de Diane (French Oaks) heroine Avenir Certain, Haras de la Cauviniere resident Le Havre was responsible for a second with La Cressonniere emulating her paternal half-sister this year.

Unsurprisingly, the Jean-Claude Rouget-trained filly is her sire’s leading money earner but the 2009 Prix du Jockey Club winner has also been represented by Group 3 Prix Vanteaux scorer Zghorta Dance, helping the ten-year-old stallion accrue £1,340,521 in prize-money.

Lope De Vega has been represented by two individual Group 1 winners this year with Belardo recording a second top-level success with victory in the Lockinge Stakes, just two days before three-year-old filly Jemayel landed a first with victory in the Prix Saint-Alary.

Another stallion standing at his highest ever fee, the son of Shamardal had his fee at Ballylinch Stud increased to €45,000 for 2016 and that looks likely to be raised again with his progeny having earned £1,235,241, less than £200,000 below his own sire’s earnings.

Yeomanstown Stud resident Dark Angel continues to impress with a trio of black-type winners on Saturday bringing his total number of European stakes winners this season to eight.

Markaz, a four-year-old brother to last season’s Nunthorpe Stakes heroine Mecca’s Angel, recorded a second Group 3 success for the son of Acclamation with victory in the Group 3 Chipchase Stakes, in the process becoming a first Group winner for first-season trainer Owen Burrows.

The 11-year-old stallion was also represented by Gabrial in the Listed Midsummer Stakes and juvenile filly Nations Alexander, who broke her maiden in the Listed Empress Stakes, illustrating just why his stud fee has risen to its current level of €60,000 from a low of €7,000 in 2010 and 2011.

Dark Angel currently lies second in the table of sires of two-year-olds in Britain and Ireland behind runaway leader Kodiac, and it is the Tally-Ho Stud stallion who is in tenth position in the European stakes winners table with earnings of £1,085,122.

The leading sire of juveniles in Britain and Ireland for the last two seasons and currently top of the table this season with 14 individual winners, Kodiac broke his duck with his two-year-old stock at Royal Ascot with Prince Of Lir claiming the Group 2 Norfolk Stakes and Ardad winning the Listed Windsor Castle Stakes.

Following an excellent season last year where he was represented by Group 2 winners Adaay, Besharah and Kodi Bear, as well as 2014 Group 1 Cheveley Park Stakes heroine Tiggy Wiggy finishing third in the 1,000 Guineas, the 15-year-old son of Danehill had his fee for 2016 almost doubled to €45,000 from €25,000


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Humphrey Bogart - Sean Levey wins from Carntop

Humphrey Bogart (left) looks set for a trip across the Atlantic Ocean

 PICTURE: Mark Cranham (racingpost.com/photos)

Beacon Rock Bravery & Alice get Belmont invitations 

USA: Beacon Rock and Humphrey Bogart feature among 14 colts invited to compete in the $1.25 million Belmont Derby on July 9.

The Aidan O'Brien-trained Beacon Rock found only Across The Stars too good in the Group 2 King Edward VII Stakes at Royal Ascot and could be joined at Belmont by stablemate Bravery.

Humphrey Bogart also has the option of a trip to the United States, with owners Chelsea Thoroughbreds keen to take up the invitation.

"We are pretty keen on going," said the group's James Ramsden.

"It's exciting to be invited to such a race, so we're just working through the logistics of it at the moment with Richard Hannon.

"There's ten people involved in the horse and it's a great thrill for the owners. An invitation like this isn't going to come along every day, so it's great for the syndicate."

Ramsden added that further targets in America could be explored should Humphrey Bogart run well at Belmont.

"While whizzing round bends in America might not be ideal for him, we are hoping that a decent pace and a drop back to 1m2f will suit." Bravery has also been Invited 

Alice Springs among fillies invited

As well as the colts, a further 14 fillies have also been invited for the $1 million Belmont Oaks on the same day, with Coronation Stakes third Alice Springs chief among them.

 

The Dermot Weld-trained Simannka, a winner at Down Royal earlier this month, is another filly invited, along with Turret Rocks for trainer Jim Bolger. 

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Sires Tables updated - Galileo Clear - Power back on top - Zoffany 2nd 



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I Just adore her what a star MINDING digital art painting piece by me


5 star MINDING Joins the Ballydoyle Greats





Impressive MINDING (Queen of Ballydoyle) wins the Pretty Polly Stakes (G1) 





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Roly Poly wins the Grangecon Stakes (Group 3) at the Curragh 




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Sir Isaac Newton & Ryan Moore win the Finlay Volvo International Stakes (Group 3) at the Curragh full report in news section



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Intelligence Cross captured perfectly by David Betts at The Curragh he looks very smart




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Watch Minding make history this afternoon




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Fighter completes Ballydoyle four-timer

 By Gary Carson

Sun 26th Jun 2016, 17:52
Sword Fighter beats Landofhopeandglory
Sword Fighter beats Landofhopeandglory
(Healy Racing Photos)
Sword Fighter produced another game front-running performance to claim the Group 2 Coral.ie Curragh Cup and complete a four-timer for Ballydoyle at the Curragh today.

Seamie Heffernan bounced out in front on the 11/4 shot as he aimed to supplement his victory in the Queen's Vase at Royal Ascot last time.

Alveena pressed the leader from two furlongs out but couldn't find a way past and had no more to offer inside the final furlong.

It was the winner's stable-mate Landofhopeandglory who came through to give chase in the closing stages but the 15/8 favourite could only get within two-lengths in the 1m6f contest.

Sword Fighter, who had sprang a 33/1 shock at Ascot, was confirming that form with Landofhopeandglory, who had been fourth in the two-miler last time.

"He's a very genuine horse. He really wants it, and stays very well. Seamie gave him a great ride, just like Colm did in Ascot. It's my fault that Ryan rode the other horse,” said O'Brien.

"He'll have a little break now as he's had a tough few weeks, and he's made for the English Leger."

Paddy Power made the winner 12/1 from 16/1 for the St Leger.

(Quotes by Alan Magee)



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Minding the star of the show again

 By Gary Carson

Sun 26th Jun 2016, 16:53
Minding and Ryan Moore
Minding and Ryan Moore
(Healy Racing Photos)
Minding showed her class once again when chasing down Bocca Baciata to land the Sea The Stars Pretty Polly Stakes at the Curragh today.< Bocca Baciata cut out the running in the Group One feature event and established a clear lead from half-way in the ten furlong contest.

1/5 shotMinding was asked to go in pursuit of the leader passing the two marker, byRyan Moore, but still had five lengths to find on the front-runner.

The Guineas and Oaks winner picked up impressively, however, and collared her rival inside the final furlong before powering away in the closing stages for a four-and-a-half length victory.

The brilliant daughter of Galileo completed a treble on a good day for Moore and Aidan O'Brien.

"She is a great filly. She loves her racing, and is getting very relaxed. Ryan was delighted with her, and we will look at something like the Nassau,” said O'Brien.

"She has two options really for her next run, the Irish Oaks and the Nassau, and we are eyeing the Irish Oaks with Even Song.

"I hope she will stay in training next year, and I'll certainly plead that she does. She is very talented and progressing all the time."

Moore said:- “I thought Jamie was going to go on but he sat back and it set her a task but she had enough class to get out of it.

“She's a very good filly. Aidan keeps bringing her back and producing her to run.

“It's some performance from a filly that's had two Guineas and an Oaks to come here. It's a tough schedule and to keep her still progressing is a magnificent achievement.

“She picked up to get there and then we shut down in the last furlong and coasted. There's more there again if we need it.

“She's a high class filly and she's adaptable. She's gone on a variety of ground. I'm very lucky to ride her, she's a pleasure.”

Paddy Power madeMinding a 5/4 shot from 2/1 for the Irish Oaks while Even Song is now 6/4 from 11/10.<Minding is 6/4 from 2/1 with the same firm for the Nassau Stakes.

(Quotes by Alan Magee)


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Roly Poly gains valuable Group 3 victory

 By Gary Carson

Sun 26th Jun 2016, 16:17
Roly Poly (left) and Seafront battle it out
Roly Poly (left) and Seafront battle it out
(Healy Racing Photos)
Roly Poly edged a terrific duel with Seafront to land the spoils in the Group 3 Grangecon Stud Stakes at the Curragh.

Ellery Lane cut out the running in the six furlong contest but was tackled passing the two pole by a trio of runners.< Seafront soon fought it out withRoly Poly and Magical Fire on their outer. The later gave way inside the final furlong whileRoly Poly edged ahead close home to secure a neck success.

Elusive Beauty ran on to finish three-parts-of-a-length back in third.

It was a double on the card for Ryan Moore and Aidan O'Brien with the well-bred daughter of War Front and Irish Guineas winner Misty For Me returning the 3/1 favourite.

The winner had made little impression when eighth in the Queen Mary at Royal Ascot last time and was stepping up to six furlongs for the first time today.

"The little bit of extra distance may have suited her. It's not that long after Ascot but she's a hardy filly. It was a tough performance and you would have to be happy,” said O'Brien.

"She's a very important filly as a Group winner with her pedigree. She could go for the Debutante if we want to try her over seven furlongs."

(Quotes by Alan Magee)


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Gurkha new Eclipse favourite

Sun 26th Jun 2016, 16:29
The Gurkha
The Gurkha 
(Healy Racing Photos)
The Gurkha has been installed as 10/3 favourite for next weekend's Coral-Eclipse by the sponsors after Aidan O'Brien suggested today that he could be targeted at the race.

The possibility of soft ground could rule out Deauville and Long Island Sound Aidan O'Brien raised the possibility of The Gurkha contesting the ten furlong contest instead.

"We are considering a few horses but the ground looks like it is going to be soft and that may go against Deauville and Long Island Sound,” said O'Brien.

"The Gurkha did nothing last week. He may do a bit this week, and we'll see after that."

Coral's David Stevens said:-

"Following his impressive French Guineas success and a close second at Royal Ascot, The Gurkha would be a leading contender if lining up at Sandown next Saturday, indeed we would regard him as the one to beat and already make him favourite.

Coral-Eclipse betting:-

10-3 The Gurkha, 7-2 My Dream Boat, Time Test, 5 Fascinating Rock, 7 US Army Ranger, The Grey Gatsby, 8 Deauville, 9 New Bay, 11 Minding, 12 Galileo Gold, Highland Reel, 16 Almodovar, Western Hymn, 20 Bar


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Idaho fine after Derby second

Sun 26th Jun 2016, 15:18
Idaho chasing home Harzand
Idaho chasing home Harzand
(Healy Racing Photos)
Aidan O'Brien today reported Idaho in good heart following his fine runner-up effort in yesterday's Irish Derby at the Curragh.

The Galileo colt, who had been third at Epsom, pushed Harzand hard as he completed the Derby double, going down by half a length.

"Idaho is fine this morning. I thought he would progress and he did but Dermot's horse just outfought us in the last 50 yards,” said the master of Ballydoyle.

“US Army Ranger will have two to three easy weeks and we will see where we go with him then,” added O'Brien

The champion trainer also raised the possibility that The Gurkha could line up in the Eclipse at Sandown next Saturday.

"We are considering a few horses but the ground looks like it is going to be soft and that may go against Deauville and Long Island Sound.

"The Gurkha did nothing last week. He may do a bit this week, and we'll see after that."

Alan Magee & Gary Carson


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Newton proves brave in International

 By Gary Carson

Sun 26th Jun 2016, 15:14
Sir Isaac Newton beats Chemical Charge
Sir Isaac Newton beats Chemical Charge
(Healy Racing Photos)
Sir Isaac Newton squeezed up the rail to gain the day in the Group 3 Finlay Volvo International Stakes at the Curragh.

Market rival Chemical Charge (6/4) made the running in the ten furlong contest andRyan Moore sentSir Isaac Newton up to challenge on the inner with over a furlong to run.

It became tight on the rail for the Ballydoyle colt inside the final furlong but the 11/8 favourite stuck his head out to lead inside the last 100 yards for a three-parts-of-a-length win.

The winner, who claimed the Wolferton Handicap at Royal Ascot on his previous start, was reversing previous course and distance form with Chemical Charge having been behind him when the pair were second and third to Portage earlier in the month.

"It's taken a long time for the penny to drop with him. He's starting to mature and relax. He's a horse that could suit America as he likes a nice bit of pace,” said Aidan O'Brien.

"He's always been a very good worker but disappointed us on the track. A mile and a quarter seems to be his trip, and he's relaxing now and quickening."

(Quotes by Alan Magee)


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Ryan Moore riding Minding (C, purple) win

Minding: star filly is odds-on for another Group 1 victory

 PICTURE: Getty Images

Classic ace Minding feared in Pretty Polly

4.20 Curragh

Sea The Stars Pretty Polly Stakes (Group 1) | 1m2f, 3yo fillies + mares | ATR

MINDING, one of the outstanding performers of the season, enters new territory today when taking on older rivals for the first time as she bids for a fifth Group 1 victory.

The Qipco 1,000 Guineas winner, who overcame trouble in running to land a second British Classic in the Investec Oaks this month, is the only three-year-old in the line-up for the Sea The Stars Pretty Polly Stakes.

Ryan Moore's mount is opposed by just Lucida, Bocca Baciata and two British-trained challengers in Koora and Speedy Boarding.

O'Brien said: "Minding hasn't done a whole lot since Epsom but she's in good form and we're happy with her. She doesn't like extremes of ground, but ground on the slow side of good will be fine for her."Aidan O'Brien, who has sent out three winners of the event - Peeping Fawn (2007), Misty For Me (2011) and Diamondsandrubies, who held Legatissimo by a short head a year ago - yesterday reported Minding in fine shape for her bid to add a Group 1 win over 1m2f to her top-level victories over 7f, 1m and 1m4f.



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Taj Mahal bids to follow in family footsteps


YOU'RESOTHRILLING, who has established herself as a proven broodmare thanks to the exploits of Gleneagles, Marvellous and Coolmore, is represented by her fourth foal, Taj Mahal, who makes his debut at the Curragh over 7f on Sunday (2.15).

The two-year-old is a son of Coolmore linchpin Galileo and is from a family that is no stranger to juvenile success.

Gleneagles was a four-time scorer at two, including at the highest level, Marvellous scored on her debut, and Coolmore won the Group 3 Weld Park Stakes as a juvenile.

Like his siblings, Taj Mahal is trained by Aidan O'Brien and could become You'resothrilling's fourth winner from four foals if he's successful in the race.You'resothrilling, a daughter of Storm Cat, was a dual winner over six furlongs at two and is a sister to Giant's Causeway, who was unbeaten as a juvenile, and now stands at Coolmore's American base at Ashford Stud.



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Intelligence off the mark at the Curragh

Sat 25th Jun 2016, 15:23
Intelligence Cross is ridden out by Intelligence Cross
Intelligence Cross is ridden out by Intelligence Cross
(Healy Racing Photos)
Intelligence Cross justified strong market support to take the opener at the Curragh, the Dubai Duty Free Finest Surprise EBF Maiden.

Available at 9/4 last night, that price was quickly snapped up, and he opened on course at even money, before going off the 10/11 favourite.

Just beaten into second on his debut over the course and distance earlier this month, the son of War Front was settled in second by Ryan Moore.

He was pushed along to lead a furlong out, and he kept on well when ridden inside the final furlong, going on to score by a length and a half.

Khukri (25/1) ran a fine race on his debut to finish second under Colm O'Donoghue forJessica Harrington, while fellow debutant Pious Alexander (12/1) was a further half a length back in third under Pat Smullen for Eddie Lynam.

Aidan O'Brien trains the successful bay, and he said afterwards: "He's a nice horse and improved nicely. He had a lovely run under Ana the first day.

"He loves fast ground and Ryan said the ground didn't feel that bad on him. He was very happy with him.

"I was worried about the ground for this horse but Ryan was surprised by how nice it was.

"We'll maybe look at the July Stakes at Newmarket with him.

"He's very fast and I'd imagine we'll stay at six furlongs for a good while with him - as long as we can.

"He's a big strong horse and made like a sprinter."

The winner holds entries in the Phoenix Stakes and the National Stakes at the Curragh, along with the Weatherbys Hamilton Stakes at Doncaster.

Additional reporting by Gary Carson


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War Front juvenile Whitecliffsofdover to make debut for O'Brien

WAR FRONT has 11 juveniles registered in training with Aidan O'Brien and the most expensive of the four purchases recorded by Weatherbys from last year's Keeneland September Yearling Sale is set to make his debut at the Curragh on Saturday in a 6f maiden (3.00).

Coolmore's MV Magnier parted with $1.15 million for Whitecliffsofdover at last year's Keeneland September Yearling Sale.

A Claiborne homebred, Orate won once and is a sister to Grade 2 winner Pulpit who established himself as a leading sire before his death in 2012.Out of the A P Indy mare Orate, he is a half-brother to the winning and Grade 1-placed Endless Chatter.

O'Brien has had plenty of success with progeny by War Front having sent out Roly Poly to win on her first start this year and with Brave Anna, a sister to Breeders' Cup Juvenile Turf hero Hit It A Bomb, who won the Group 3 Albany Stakes at Royal Ascot earlier this month.


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New Starspangledbanner Coolmore poster

main image



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Minding by me




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Minding faces four rivals in Pretty Polly Stakes

Updated: Friday, 24 Jun 2016 14:46 | 

Minding is a top-price 2-7 favourite Pretty Polly Stakes
Minding is a top-price 2-7 favourite Pretty Polly Stakes

Dual Classic heroine Minding will face just four rivals in the Sea The Stars Pretty Polly Stakes at the Curragh on Sunday.

Having struck twice at Group One level as a juvenile, the Galileo filly was a stunning winner of the 1000 Guineas at Newmarket at the start of May.

Aidan O'Brien's charge suffered a shock defeat when chasing the Guineas double in Ireland three weeks later, but bounced back to her brilliant best to win the Investec Oaks at Epsom and now faces her elders for the first time in her career.

The James Fanshawe-trained Speedy Boarding lines up off the back of a career-best performance when winning the Prix Corrida at Saint-Cloud.

She is joined on the trip from Britain by Koora, who made a perfectly satisfactory return to action when runner-up in last month's Middleton Stakes at York for Luca Cumani.

Jim Bolger's Lucida and Bocca Baciata from Jessica Harrington's yard complete the small but select field.


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Midas Touch sold to stand at stud in Uruguay

MIDAS TOUCH, a nine-year-old son of Coolmore stalwart Galileo, has been sold to stand at Haras Rapetti in Uruguay in a deal brokered by Miguel Ezcurra Bloodstock.

He had been standing his first season at Rockridge Stud in New York at a fee of $3,500 having previously spent three seasons at War Horse Place in Kentucky. His oldest crop are two-year-olds of 2016.

Bred by Belgrave Bloodstock out of the Darshaan mare Approach,Midas Touch was trained by Aidan O'Brien to win twice including in the Group 2 Derrinstown Stud Derby Trial Stakes. He also finished second in the Irish Derby and St Leger.

Transferred to the care of Robert Hickmott in Australia, he went on to finish third in the Group 1 Underwood Stakes.

Lere Visagie, owner of Rockridge Stud said: "The farm [Haras Rapetti] has shown interest in Midas Touch since he came to us and we were hoping to work out a shuttle arrangement.

"Unfortunately, the untimely death of Midas Touch's owner, Andres Rodriguez, forced the estate to find a buyer for him. He has found a very good home."


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Idaho attempts to enhance Aidan O'Brien's brilliant Derby record

Following the defection of Epsom runner-up US Army Ranger due to an unsatisfactory scope, Aidan O'Brien's main hope of landing a 12th Dubai Duty Free Irish Derby is Idaho.

The son of Galileo made the frame in the Ballysax and Derrinstown, and was beaten a shade under three lengths into third place behind Harzand in the Investec Derby on the Downs.

"You would have to say Idaho progressed very well, and I'm very happy with him since," said O'Brien.

"Epsom was on the soft side this year, more so than I have seen it for a long time.

"I was very impressed with Harzand. He's a very strong stayer, and a big, honest horse that puts his head out and gallops all the way to the line. We were delighted for Dermot (Weld), Pat (Smullen) and His Highness the Aga Khan and their whole operation.

"His Highness puts a lot into the sport and Dermot and Pat are very professional, proper people. Obviously we try hard to win every race but we know that can't be the way and at Epsom we were delighted for the connections of the winner. He is a very good horse."

O'Brien feels that while the track can play a big part in the result at Epsom, the Curragh gives a true reflection of a horse's genuine ability.

He said: "The Curragh suits every horse. It's a big, galloping straightforward track.

"There is nowhere to hide, and I don't remember many horses not handling the Curragh. Obviously Epsom can be tricky. It's a switch-back, up and down. It can be tricky and tactical, whereas the Curragh is usually very straightforward.

"The Irish Derby is so important because it's not tactical and it's pure ability. You have to get a mile and a half well, and they have to be very genuine. The Irish Derby is the vital test for a three-year-old, and it sets the standard for all the ratings."


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Daughter of Halfway To Heaven in Curragh debut

THE opening race at the Curragh on Friday, a 7f fillies maiden at 5.30pm, sees a whole host of blue-blooded runners lock horns, including several newcomers.

The first debutante to note is Bound, a two-year-old daughter ofGalileo who will be carrying the colours of the Coolmore partners.

The filly is the third foal out of the Danehill Dancer mare Remember When, who failed to win during a six-race career but did finish runner-up to Snow Fairy in the 2010 Oaks.

Remember When is a close relation to Prix de l'Arc de Triomphe hero Dylan Thomas and 1,000 Guineas winner Homecoming Queen, as well as being a half-sister to Group 1 Cheveley Park Stakes winner Queen's Logic.

That makes the Aidan O'Brien-trained Bound a sister to the 1m1f Group 2 winner Wedding Vow and 1m2f Group 3 scorer Beacon Rock.

O'Brien is also due to saddle another daughter of Galileo,Rhododendron. She is out of the Pivotal mare Halfway To Heaven, who O'Brien trained to win a trio of Group 1s, with those successes coming in the Irish 1,000 Guineas, the Nassau Stakes and the Sun Chariot Stakes.

Rhododendron is the fourth foal Halfway To Heaven has produced, with her sisters including the 1m2f Group 3-winning Flying The Flag and the 1m4f winner Just Gorgeous.

Among those already with form are O'Brien's other runner,Butterflies, who is a Galileo half-sister to six winners including the top-class 7f-1m2f Group 1 winner Giant's Causeway and You'resothrilling, who was a 6f Group 2-winning two-year-old and is also the dam of the 2015 dual 2,000 Guineas winner Gleneagles and 2014 Irish 1,000 Guineas heroine Marvellous.

Despite her illustrious pedigree Butterflies could only manage an eight-and-a-half length third on her debut, when behind the Jim Bolger-trained Oh Grace.



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We have come along way since our launch in 2010 - we have now reached

460,000 Unique visitors.




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Throwback thursday - Irish Derby Weekend - Aidan's 1st winner of the race DESERT KING




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This took some researching - info you'd think would be easy to find, was not easy to find years won but I got there





Lennox Stakes entry for Air Force Blue

Thu 23rd Jun 2016, 13:21
Air Force Blue
Air Force Blue
(Healy Racing Photos)
Air Force Blue and Toormore are among the big names in contention for the Qatar Lennox Stakes at Glorious Goodwood.

The Aidan O'Brien-trained Air Force Blue completed a hat-trick of Group One victories in the Dewhurst Stakes at Newmarket last October, but has been bitterly disappointing in both the 2000 Guineas at Newmarket and the Irish version at the Curragh so far this season.

The War Front colt is one of six possible Ballydoyle challengers in the seven-furlong Group Two, with recent Leopardstown scorer Dick Whittington another leading hope.

Other Group One winners among 41 entries include last year's winner Toormore, Lumiere and Charming Thought.


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Tepin-360

Tepin: Queen Anne Stakes heroine is by Bernstein, a son of Storm Cat

 PICTURE: Edward Whitaker (racingpost.com/photos)

Storm Cat line back among the Ascot winners

HARDLY a major meeting goes by nowadays that doesn't benefit Galileo. Royal Ascot was again no exception, with Coolmore's perennial champion sire accounting for five winners led by Gold Cup hero Order Of St George.

Following this year's meeting, he has a total of 18 Royal Ascot winners, placing him within striking distance of his sire Sadler's Wells, who sired 20 during his illustrious career.

Dominance of Galileo aside, one of the themes of Royal Ascot 2016 was the success of US-bred horses, who struck in five Pattern events.

Popularity of American-breds has taken a knock in recent years, partly in reaction to the never-ending debate over the country's use of raceday medication.

With Europe also home to Galileo and Dubawi among others, there is also no real need for owner-breeders to target America's elite sires, many of whom have built their reputations on dirt racing.

Having said that, Royal Ascot served as a reminder that Kentucky still has plenty to offer European racing, in particular the Storm Cat line, which was responsible for five winners led by Tepin, who provided the US with a memorable victory in the Queen Anne Stakes.

Storm Cat to the fore

Before the days of Galileo's domination, there was a spell when Royal Ascot played host to various Ballydoyle-trained Storm Cat hotpots. Coolmore's support of the Overbrook Farm stallion was all encompassing, ranging from the buying of his stock at auction (Demi O'Byrne signed for 21 million-dollar Storm Cat yearlings from 1997 to 2007) to the belief in a number of his sons at stud.

In return, Storm Cat provided Ballydoyle with various highlights on the track, among them Group 1-winning two-year-olds such as Hold That Tiger and One Cool Cat to top-class three-year-olds Black Minnaloushe and Giant's Causeway, both of whom won the St James's Palace Stakes.

The Storm Cat-Ballydoyle axis also enjoyed a high-profile Ascot double in 2002 when Statue Of Liberty and Sophisticat landed the Coventry and Coronation Stakes.

Many of those good Coolmore-owned Storm Cat colts duly took up a position on Coolmore's roster, and with varying degrees of success. Breeders flocked to the likes of One Cool Cat and Statue Of Liberty in Ireland, while Hold That Tiger, Black Minnaloushe, High Yield and Van Nistelrooy received plenty of opportunity at Coolmore's arm in Kentucky.

While each had their moments in the sun, they were also swiftly moved on once their limitations became apparent.

However, ‘The Iron Horse' Giant's Causeway remains one of the mainstays of the Ashford Stud roster as a three-time champion US sire who has become a noted sire of sires and broodmare sire.

Tale Of The Cat is also an Ashford stalwart, having sired 74 stakes winners worldwide during his long stud innings. The stud was also once home to Hennessy, who died relatively young but not before he had been represented by champion two-year-old Johannesburg, sire of the much missed Scat Daddy.

The Storm Cat sire-line is probably not in the sort of health that was envisaged during the early 2000s when sons such as Giant's Causeway, Forest Wildcat, Stormy Atlantic, Tale Of The Cat, Aljabr, Cat Thief, Exploit, Forestry and Tactical Cat were commanding significant fees in Kentucky.

With the last five named disappointing and Stormy Atlantic yet to have a truly successful sire son, the health of the line seemingly rests primarily with Giant's Causeway and Johannesburg, and to a lesser extent Harlan's Holiday.

Johannesburg's son Scat Daddy fired in a juvenile Group-race Royal Ascot double courtesy of Caravaggio and Lady Aurelia, who maintained their unbeaten records with imperious displays in the Coventry and Queen Mary Stakes. As the daughter of a Forest Wildcat mare, Lady Aurelia is actually inbred 4x3 to Storm Cat.

Giant's Causeway has become an integral part of European racing's fabric through Shamardal, who got on the Ascot scoresheet when his daughter Usherette took the Duke of Cambridge Stakes. Shamardal's son, the upwardly mobile Lope De Vega, was also on the mark as the sire of Britannia Stakes winner Defrocked.

Giant's Causeway himself, meanwhile, is the damsire of Tercentenary Stakes winner Hawkbill. As for Storm Cat, he is the damsire of Chesham Stakes winner Churchill, one of 12 stakes winners bred on the Galileo-Storm Cat cross.

One high-profile O'Brien-trained Storm Cat colt cut loose by Coolmore at the end of his racing career was Bernstein, the Railway and Concorde Stakes winner who started his stud career at Buck Pond Farm in Kentucky.

There was a sense that Bernstein never quite lived up to expectations on the track - he was sent off the 4-11 favourite when unplaced in the 1999 National Stakes behind Sinndar - but he became a very useful sire in Kentucky before his death from colic aged 14.

His first crop of 37 two-year-olds, bred off $10,000, contained seven stakes winners and by 2007 he was commanding a career-high $30,000 at Castleton Lyons in Kentucky.

At the time of his death in 2011, Grade 1-winning fillies Miss World and Dream Empress were the best of his US-bred progeny, but better was to come out of his penultimate crop in Tepin and Karakontie, the Breeders' Cup Mile, Poule d'Essai des Poulains and Prix Jean-Luc Lagardere winner. Bernstein also left behind 15 Group 1 winners in Argentina.

War Front strikes again

Scat Daddy isn't the only Kentucky stallion to have enjoyed considerable success at Royal Ascot.

On Friday, War Front was represented by his third winner at the meeting since 2013 when Brave Anna held off Bletchley to take the Albany Stakes. The Claiborne Farm stallion memorably fired in an opening day Group-race double in 2013 courtesy of Declaration Of War and War Command in the Queen Anne and Coventry Stakes.

He subsequently came close to further success in 2014 when Due Diligence finished second in the Diamond Jubilee Stakes and again last year through the runner-up effort of Air Force Blue in the Coventry Stakes.

Coolmore's well documented regard for War Front has been influential in the stallion covering a number of high-class Sadler's Wells line mares, among them Group 1 winners and/or producers Imagine, Maryinsky, Misty For Me, Quarter Moon, Together and Was.

The first War Front foal out of a Sadler's Wells mare to hit the track turned out to be French Listed winner The Brothers War. Since then, the cross has been represented by six further runners for four other winners, among them Brave Anna and her Grade 1-winning brother Hit It A Bomb. The pair were bred by Evie Stockwell out of her Ballyogan Stakes winner Liscanna.

There wasn't a Galileo mare among War Front's book until 2013 but unsurprisingly there are several choicely bred youngsters bred on the cross led by Queen Mary Stakes also-ran Roly Poly, out of Misty For Me, and Leo Minor, a promising second on his debut at Gowran Park this month.

The group also contains Upfront, a two-year-old out of the Classic-placed Up who changed hands at Keeneland in January 2015 for $800,000 to Solis/Litt, acting on behalf of Larry, Nanci and Jaime Roth's LNJ Foxwoods.


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BRAVE ANNA - digital art piece by me.




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New Coolmore Australia Interactive Breeding Handbook 2016 available to view here > http://www.aidanobrienfansite.com/breeding-rosters-2016.php


 
 











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US Army Ranger to miss Derby


US ARMY RANGER will miss the Dubai Duty Free Irish Derby on Saturday after producing an unsatisfactory scope on Wednesday morning.

The Investec Derby runner-up had been promoted to odds-on favourite after doubts surfaced over the participation of his Epsom conqueror Harzand, but the compelling rematch is now definitely off.

Speaking to the Racing Post, trainer Aidan O'Brien said: "US Army Ranger's scope this morning wasn't 100 per cent and unfortunately he won't be running in the Irish Derby. It's a terrible pity as we were all looking forward to running him."

O'Brien confirmed jockey Ryan Moore will switch to Idaho, taking over from Seamie Heffernan who rode the colt to finish third at Epsom.

In the updated market, Coral make Harzand and Idaho their 11-8 joint-favourites for the Curragh Classic, with Red Verdon (8-1) and Moonlight Magic (10-1) next in the list.

"US Army Ranger had been well-backed for the Irish Derby in recent days, so the news he will miss the race will come as a blow to punters who had made him the odds-on favourite," said Coral's David Stevens.

"Connections still have a leading chance on Saturday in the form of Idaho, who now shares favouritism with the easy to back Harzand, while we await further news on US Army Ranger with interest, as he does hold a Coral-Eclipse entry, and would be a leading contender if lining up at Sandown early next month."

On Tuesday, trainer Dermot Weld revealed he will wait until the day of the race to decided on Harzand’s participation as the Aga Khan colt recuperates from a course on antibiotics issued to prevent infection


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Timeform Global Rankings European Division Ballydoyle Spotlight & News Update




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Sister to Minding bids to break maiden at Naas


THE 6f fillies maiden that opens the card at Naas on Wednesday evening (6pm) sees How, a two-year-old Galileo sister to this year's 1,000 Guineas and Oaks heroine Minding, bid to record a first win on her third racecourse start.

On form as well as pedigree the Aidan O'Brien-trained filly looks the one to beat as her most recent start at the Curragh saw her finish a one-and-a-quarter length third to stablemate Brave Anna, who triumphed in last week's Group 3 Albany Stakes at Royal Ascot.

Bred by Orpendale, Chelston and Wynatt out of the dual Group 1-winning miler Lillie Langtry, a Danehill Dancer half-sister to Listed scorer Count Of Limonade, How is also a sister to last year's Derrinstown Stud 1,000 Guineas Trial victress Kissed By Angels, while Lillie Langtry foaled another Galileo filly last year.

By Acclamation, Drumfad Bay is the first foal out of the Medicean mare Manieree, a four-time winner from 7f to 1m2f and successful in the Group 2 Blandford Stakes, Group 3 Kilboy Estate Stakes and Listed Garnet Stakes.Among her opponents is the Jessica Harrington-trained debutante Drumfad Bay, a €200,000 purchase by BBA Ireland at last year's Tattersalls October Yearling Sale from the family of Group 1 winners Oath and Pelder.

Half-brother to Fame And Glory in action at Salisbury

The concluding 1m2f maiden at Salisbury sees the Marcus Tregoning-trained Sir Percy filly Dance The Dream look to make a perfect start to her racecourse career in the hands of Martin Dwyer at 5.20pm.

Out of the 2002 Cheshire Oaks heroine and Oaks third Shadow Dancing, a daughter of Unfuwain, she is a half-sister to three winners including the Red Ransom gelding Rasmy who Tregoning trained to win a 1m maiden at Bath before finishing a half-length third in the Group 3 Dee Stakes.

Of her opponents, the one with the strongest pedigree is undoubtedly the Andrew Balding-trained filly Great And Small, a once-raced daughter of Galileo and three-parts sister to the four-time Group 1 hero Fame And Glory and Yummy Mummy, the 1m2f-winning dam of last season's 1,000 Guineas heroine Legatissimo.

Owned and bred by Nicholas Jones at his Coln Valley Stud, she is out of the Shirley Heights mare Gryada, a winner over 6f and 1m who was also placed third in the Group 3 Premio Dormello, meaning Great And Small is also a half-sister to the Listed-placed pair Grampian and Guaranda, herself the dam of Group 3 Lillie Langtry Stakes winner Gravitation.

Another well-bred contender is the twice-raced colt Voices Of Kings, a son of Poet's Voice.

Bred by Usk Valley Stud, he has twice been through the sales ring, on the second occasion when purchased by trainer William Muir for 45,000gns at the 2014 Tattersalls October Yearling Sale.

Out of the 7f winner Khubza, a Green Desert half-sister to European Group 2 scorers Barrow Creek and Last Resort, Voices Of Kings is a half-brother to ten winners including Group 2 Prix du Rond-Point winner and Lockinge Stakes runner-up Trans Island and Italian Group 3 victress Welsh Diva, dam of Meydan Group 3 winner Fityaan.


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They Don't come much better than this lad


 


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Air Force needs quick ground

  • Last Updated: June 21 2016, 10:07 BST

Aidan O'Brien is hoping the ground at Newmarket will quick enough to allow Air Force Blue to run in next month's Darley July Cup.

Air Force Blue will run at Newmarket if conditions are suitable

Air Force Blue will run at Newmarket if conditions are suitable

O'Brien had hoped champion juvenile Air Force Blue would make his mark in the mile division this year, but he failed to sparkle on his return in the 2000 Guineas at Newmarket in April.

He tried a mile again in the Irish equivalent for his next run but he raced keenly on soft ground and was again well beaten.

Air Force Blue was supplemented for the Commonwealth Cup at Royal Ascot, but he was ruled out of last Friday's Group One, which was won by Quiet Reflection, on account of the good to soft ground.

"Hopefully, the next target for him will be the July Cup.""He won't run again until the ground is good or faster, but we are happy with him," said O'Brien.


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O'Brien targets Railway win

  • Last Updated: June 21 2016, 14:25 BST

Aidan O'Brien has four possible runners in the GAIN Railway Stakes at the Curragh on Saturday as he bids to win the Group Two for a 13th time.

Aidan O'Brien (top hat) has four entered in the Railway Stakes

Aidan O'Brien (top hat) has four entered in the Railway StakeShould he be successful with either Intelligence Cross, Peace Envoy, Pedestal or War Decree, the Ballydoyle trainer would move to within one of Vincent O'Brien's record 14 wins in the six-furlong feature for two-year-olds.

Aidan O'Brien's son Joseph may saddle Ambiguity, who was unplaced in the Windsor Castle Stakes at Royal Ascot last week.

Johnny Murtagh, another former retained jockey at Ballydoyle, has two entries at the confirmation stage - Grand Coalition and Ready To Roc.

Another trainer doubly-represented is Ger Lyons with King Electric and Medicine Jack while Kevin Ryan's Dream Of Dreams, a winner at Haydock last month, is the sole British-trained entry.

Andy Oliver's Billy Big, Ken Condon's Glenamoy Lad and Mirdif from Michael O'Callaghan's yard complete a list of 13 contenders.


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Strong Ballydoyle Team this weekend 

Minding-Ryan

Aidan O’Brien is aiming a quartet of high-class colts at theG1 Dubai Duty Free Irish Derby at The Curragh on Saturday. The Ballydoyle trainer is seeking his 12th victory in the race which is worth €1.5m this year. O’Brien’s challengers, namely US Army Ranger (Ire)‘TDN Rising Star’ Idaho (Ire)Port Douglas (Ire) and Shogun (Ire), incidentally all sons of Galileo (Ire), will be seeking revenge on their Epsom conqueror Harzand (Ire) (Sea The Stars {Ire}) with US Army Ranger and Idaho only beaten a length and a half and three lengths respectively by the winner at Epsom.

“The horses have come out of Epsom well,” said the trainer, who saddled seven winners at Royal Ascot last week. “We are very happy with US Army Ranger. He was only a baby going into Epsom and we didn’t know how he would take it so it was pitching him in big time and he was green and babyish but he has come forward and out of the race great, to be honest.” O’Brien continued, “Idaho ran a real big race at Epsom and you would have to say he progressed lovely from Leopardstown and we are very happy with him since. Shogun and Port Douglas are in the Derby as well and both could probably go there also but we’ll see closer to the weekend what else lines up.”

One of his Epsom runners that will not take up his engagement on Saturday is Deauville (Ire) (Galileo {Ire}), with the trainer planning a drop down in trip for his next start. “Deauville will not run,” said O’Brien. “It looked like he didn’t stay at Epsom, so at this stage we are looking at bringing him back to 10 furlongs for the [G1] Eclipse [July 2].”

O’Brien’s star filly Minding (Ire) (Galileo {Ire}) is also set for a reappearance at the weekend, but will stick to her own sex and take in the G1 Sea The Stars Pretty Polly S. at The Curragh on Sunday.

Confirmed the trainer of the four time Group 1 winner and dual Classic heroine, “We will probably run Minding in the Pretty Polly. I have been happy with her since the Oaks and providing everything goes well between now and the weekend, she will run.”

O’Brien also issued an update on last year’s GI Breeders’ Cup Juvenile Turf winner Hit It A Bomb (War Front). The colt was unbeaten as a juvenile and has recovered from a setback that ruled him out of the early part of the season.

“He’s coming along well and we’re looking at running him in a race at the Oaks meeting at the Curragh next month,” O’Brien concluded. “He’s suited to a mile to 10 furlongs.”


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1) US Army Ranger leads Idaho this morning ahead of their rematch with Harzand on Saturday!


2) He's back HIT IT A BOMB


Ranger Ready for Irish Derby



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Deep Impact filly Pavlenko, first foal of G1 winning juvenile Maybe, holds an entry Naas on Wednesday.


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A.P.O'Brien 7 Times Champion Trainer at Royal Ascot 




  

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Reel to return for revenge mission

  • Last Updated: June 20 2016, 11:39 BST

Highland Reel could return to Ascot next month for the King George VI And Queen Elizabeth Stakes following his narrow defeat on the final day of the Royal meeting.


Highland Reel (far side): Was denied a clear run at the Royal meeting

The four-year-old was beaten just a head by Dartmouth in the Hardwicke Stakes on Saturday on what was his first European start since last September.

Third in the Cox Plate and winner of the Hong Kong Vase in the interim, trainer Aidan O'Brien believes better ground on July 23 would suit.

He said: "We might aim him at the King George. He likes good ground and the race there should suit him."

O'Brien also felt Ballydoyle was hampered by the ground in her weekend run, as she finished sixth in the Prix de Diane at Chantilly on Sunday.

He said: "Ryan (Moore) said a mile and a quarter is as far as she wanted to go. The ground was very tacky for her. She wants much better ground but I needed to get a run into her as she missed two races."

One of O'Brien's juvenile stars of last year poised to make his return is Hit It A Bomb, who is pencilled in to run at the Curragh next month.

Sidelined by a setback in the first half of the season, Hit It A Bomb is reported to be on the comeback trail.The War Front colt won each of his three starts last term, culminating in a narrow victory in the Breeders' Cup Juvenile Turf at Keeneland last October.

O'Brien added: "He's coming along well and we're looking at running him in a race at the Oaks meeting at the Curragh next month. He's suited to a mile to 10 furlongs."


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Minding set for Sunday challenge

  • Last Updated: June 20 2016, 11:10 BST

Minding is likely to take a step back in trip to 10 furlongs in Sunday's Sea The Stars Pretty Polly Stakes at the Curragh.

Minding: Oaks heroine to run on Sunday

Minding: Oaks heroine to run on Sunday

Winner of the 1000 Guineas at Newmarket and the Investec Oaks at Epsom, Minding would be shooting for a fifth Group One triumph having also won the Moyglare Stud Stakes and the Fillies' Mile as a juvenile.

The Galileo filly overcame trouble in running to win at Epsom, bouncing back from a shock Irish 1,000 Guineas defeat in the process, and O'Brien is pleased with her progress since her second Classic victory.

He said: "We will probably run Minding in the Pretty Polly. I have been happy with her since the Oaks and providing everything goes well between now and the weekend, she will run in the Pretty Polly."

O'Brien could also turn out Peace Envoy again in the GAIN Railway Stakes after he finished fourth in the Norfolk Stakes at Royal Ascot last week.

The Power colt was beaten just a length and a quarter by Prince Of Lir and O'Brien believes he can cope with two runs in quick succession.

He added: "I'm thinking of running Peace Envoy in the Railway Stakes. I might have left him a bit short for Ascot but he seems fine since.

"He's a hardy horse and I think he's capable (of making a quick return)."


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US Army Ranger

US Army Ranger: one of four intended Irish Derby runners for O'Brien

 PICTURE: Patrick McCann (racingpost.com/photos

Ranger to spearhead O'Brien Derby quartet

AIDAN O'BRIEN said on Monday morning he expects to have four runners in Saturday's Dubai Duty Free Irish Derby at the Curragh.

Epsom second and third US Army Ranger and Idaho are set to spearhead the quartet, with Shogun and Port Douglas - who also ran at Epsom - the others being lined up to run.

Deauville - who also ran in the Derby - is being targeted at the Coral-Eclipse at Sandown the following Saturday on July 2.

Running plans

O'Brien, who hosted the media at his Ballydoyle yard, said: "The horses have come out of Epsom well. We're looking at US Army Ranger and Idaho and probably Shogun and Port Douglas."

He added: "Deauville will not run. We felt in the Dante at York that in the last half-furlong he didn't quite get home and it looked like he didn't stay at Epsom, so at this stage we're looking at bringing him back to a mile and a quarter for the Eclipse."

O'Brien's 1,000 Guineas and Oaks heroine Minding is set to run in Sunday's Pretty Polly Stakes at the Curragh, the trainer added.

"Minding came out of her Epsom win well and is in good form," said O'Brien. "The plan is to run her in the Pretty Polly if we are happy with her nearer the weekend



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Leading Sires Tables Updated - Galileo has it won (Gotta feel sorry for the rest) Power 4th Zoffany 2nd



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Year by Year Stats updated after Royal Ascot


 


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Looking good for Aidan (well clear)



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What a week so many meories

 


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Coolmore 5th & Ballydoyle 6th in the Prix Du Diane brave effort from Coolmore who made the pace Ballydoyle came from last where she was a little detached from the field and could not make up the ground from the bad draw.


Coolmore getting ready for the Prix Du Diane 



Ballydoyle getting ready for the Prix Du Diane 



Coolmore & Ballydoyle 



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Order Of St George (Ryan Moore)

Order Of St George one of five winners for Coolmore's Galileo

 PICTURE: Edward Whitaker (racingpost.com/photos)

Champion Galileo out on his own at Royal Ascot

A look at the winners and losers from the five days of Royal Ascot


WINNERS

Galileo

With every meeting that passes we are reminded not only of the brilliance of Coolmore's multiple champion sire but also the deep influence he looks set to exert on the breed in the coming years.

Galileo topped the sire standings at Royal Ascot with five individual winners - four of them in a row when Kinema and Sword Fighter won the last two races on Friday, the Duke of Edinburgh Handicap and Queen's Vase, and Churchill and Sir Isaac Newton landed the first two races yesterday, the Chesham Stakes and Wolferton Handicap.

Galileo's other winner this week was Order Of St George, brilliant winner of the Gold Cup.

Galileo also made his presence felt as the paternal grandsire of Royal Hunt Cup winner Portage, by his son Teofilo, and as the maternal grandsire of St James's Palace Stakes hero Galileo Gold and Hardwicke Stakes winner Dartmouth.



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Aidan Talks about the Irish Derby - Audio interview 



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George given Melbourne option

  • Last Updated: June 18 2016, 16:58 BST

Gold Cup hero Order Of St George is to be given an entry in the Melbourne Cup.

Order of St George could run in the Melbourne Cup

Order of St George could run in the Melbourne Cup

The Aidan O'Brien-trained four-year-old stamped his class on the Royal Ascot showpiece on Thursday, and is likely to be seen next in an autumn campaign, which will include the defence of his Irish St Leger crown.

After that a trip Down Under could be on the cards, with part-owner Lloyd Williams having already won the 'race that stops a nation' on four occasions.

O'Brien said: "He won't come back for the King George.

"We were always going to give him a break after this week and look at an autumn campaign.

RaceBets cut the Galileo colt to 11-1 from 20-1 for Melbourne in the wake of his Ascot success"I spoke to his owner Lloyd Williams last night and he is going to be entered in the Melbourne Cup."


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Ryan Moore

Ryan Moore: celebrated his fifth Royal Ascot winner of the week

 PICTURE: Edward Whitaker (racingpost.com/photos)

More Royal Ascot success for O'Brien and Moore

Report: Ascot, Saturday

Wolferton Handicap (Listed) 1m2f, 4yo+

RYAN MOORE and Aidan O'Brien made it two wins from two on the final day of Royal Ascot as they teamed up with the well backed Pricewise selection Sir Isaac Newton to land the Wolferton.

The victory allowed Moore to establish his position at the head of the meeting's top rider standings in his own right, having previously been tied with Frankie Dettori on four winners.

"I had a very good trip round," said Moore, who scraped paint off the rail the whole way round. "He's a high class horse who sort of lost his way.

"We thought a lot of him last year and the trainer's done remarkably well to get him back winning today. He's definitely got the ability [to go back to a higher level] and I think just racing can hopefully improve him and move him forward."



   



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3902419-360

Churchill hung left but did enough to beat Isomer and Cunco

 PICTURE: Edward Whitaker (racingpost.com/photos)

V for victory as Churchill lands significant gamble

Report: Royal Ascot, Saturday

Chesham Stakes (Listed Race) 2yo, 7f

CHURCHILL was backed like defeat was out of the question overnight and into Saturday and he delivered - although not without giving those who punted him into 8-11 favouritism a mighty scare.

The son of Galileo hit the front stylishly but showed signs of inexperience on only his second start as he hung markedly to the left, almost handing the race to the fast-finishing 25-1 hope Isomer.

Cunco, meanwhile, put in a fine display to become the second Frankel juvenile to hit the frame this week, taking third having been sent off a 7-2 shot.

The result saw Ryan Moore overhaul Frankie Dettori at the head of the top jockeys standings, with the pair now both having notched four victories but Moore holding the advantage courtesy of his placed efforts.

'He's one to look forward to'

Ryan Moore was not overly concerned about Churchill's antics late on and after the line and is confident the Aidan O'Brien-trained colt is an exciting prospect for the future.

"He's a big powerful horse, a beautiful horse," Moore said. "He travelled very smoothly to get there he was just very green. He's a high quality two-year-old.

"The whole time he was going there he was always just waiting, he's a bit of a baby but he's one to look forward to."

O'Brien's leading hope

Co-owner Michael Tabor admitted Aidan O'Brien had considered Churchill his best chance for the week but admitted he was given quite a fright as the colt almost threw the race away.

"You must remember, it's only his second run and he was very green," he said. "We think there's a lot of improvement in him and hopefully he'll be a very nice horse for the future.

"He really was Aidan's number one fancy for the week and so it proved to be. We haven't discussed targets yet or thought about it personally. You like to win here and not jump ahead of yourself."

Paddy Power reacted by trimming Churchill into 12-1 from 14-1 for next year's 2,000 Guineas and into 16-1 from 25-1 for the Derby at Epsom.






 





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Highland Reel 2nd in the Hardwicke Stakes brave effort




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British Flat trainers Championship 2016 Update - Looking good for Aidan's 5th title



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Sword takes Queen's Vase for Ballydoyle

Fri 17th Jun 2016, 18:20
Sword Fighter and Colm O'Donoghue prevail
Sword Fighter and Colm O'Donoghue prevail
(Healy Racing Photos)
Sword Fighter (33/1) provided Aidan O'Brien's supporters with a long-priced Royal Ascot winner in the Queen's Vase.

The beautifully-bred son of Galileo made just about every yard of the running in the two-mile contest and held off a host of challengers late on under Colm O'Donoghue.

O'Donoghue looked certain to be reeled in by Harbour Law as the field entered the final two furlongs but he continued to pull out extra under pressure.

Harbour Law (8/1) closed again in the final strides but was still around a length behind the winner at the line.

Twilight Payment came with a late flourish to snatch third at 20/1 ahead of the strongly-backed 10/3 favourite Landofhopeandglory, the first string from O'Brien's yard.

The Ballydoyle handler was completing a double after Brave Anna's success in the opening Albany Stakes.

O'Donoghue said: "To be fair all the horses come here in prime condition and Aidan has them ready for the day.

"He's a horse that handles an ease in the ground and he has loads of heart.

"He's done everything right. He settled and travelled and he's not short of speed, either. He picked up from a mile out and was strong to the line.

"I've been getting a lot of very good rides from a great team of people from a very young age. I'm very grateful."

O'Brien said: "Colm gave him a class ride. He dictated the pace lovely the whole way and got it absolutely spot on.

"He got beaten the last day by Dermot's (Weld) horse in Naas, but Donnacha (O'Brien) said we should bring him here and step him up to two miles.

"I wasn't convinced by what he'd said, but obviously he was right. Colm and Seamie (Heffernan, rider of Brave Anna) are world-class riders and any opportunities they get, you see the results. I'm so lucky to have them."

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Alice Springs 3rd in the Coronation Stakes and very very unlucky



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Beacon Rock 2nd in the King Edward Brave run was at the front from the start

Beacon Rock & Ryan Moore in the Royal Ascot Parade Ring






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Brave Anna (Seamie Heffernan,2nd left)

Brave Anna (second left) hung on to deny Bletchley (left)

 PICTURE: Edward Whitaker (racingpost.com/photos)

Brave Anna holds on to land Albany for O'Brien

Report: Royal Ascot, Friday

Albany Stakes (Group 3) 6f, 2yo fillies

AIDAN O'BRIEN claimed his fourth winner of the week but not with the filly the market expected as Brave Anna held on from the fast-finishing Bletchley to score.

Ridden by Seamie Heffernan, 16-1 shot Brave Anna was prominent nearer the stands side of the course and hit the front with a furlong to run.

Queen Kindly, the first of Frankel's offspring to run at the meeting, put up a fine performance to take third, half a length further away, having been sent off a 13-2 chance.Bletchley, also sent off at 16-1, was delivered late down the outside by Oisin Murphy but could not quite get there and missed out by a short head.

The winner's stablemate Cuff, the 2-1 favourite, could manage only fifth.

"She's a lovely filly and came here off the back of a good win at the Curragh," said Heffernan. "Aidan told me to give her a chance and hopefully she would run well, which she did. These are the winners you want."

MV Magnier paid tribute to Heffernan, adding: "The filly is very tough and Seamie said before that he fancied her. It's great she won and it's great for him too."

BetVictor responded to the victory by trimming Brave Anna to 16-1 (from 33) for next year's 1,000 Guineas, the same price William Hill go for her as well as Bletchley and Queen Kindly.








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CUFF & Ryan Moore in the Royal Ascot Parade Ring



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Aidan O'Brien's 51 Royal Ascot Victories

A.P.O'Brien Career Stats updated




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Dick Whittington back in the headlines

Thu 16th Jun 2016, 20:28
Dick Whittington and Seamie Heffernan come home in front of Al Mohalhal and Kevin Manning
Dick Whittington and Seamie Heffernan come home in front of Al Mohalhal and Kevin Manning
There were two winners for Ballydoyle today at Royal Ascot with Even Song and Order Of St George prevailing, and a brace was also achieved at Leopardstown for Flat racing's powerhouse. The double in County Dublin was completed when the Seamie Heffernan-partnered Dick Whittington won the Group 3 Ballycorus Stakes, run for the first time under the Oliver Brady Memorial Shabra moniker.

The pace-setting Al Mohalhal, and Group 1 winning juvenile, Dick Whittington, has this extended seven furlong feature between themselves inside the final quarter mile.

Dick Whittington (7/4) was marginally headed for favouritism by Kelinni (cross-channel raider, eventually fourth at 13/8) but the former showed his class in the final furlong to oblige by two and three parts of a length.

Four and three parts of a length was the margin back to Dont Bother Me in third.

"With a little ease in the ground, over six or seven, he's a genuine Group 3 or Group 2 horse. He'll be very competitive in all those races," said Joseph O'Brien.

"Seamie gave him a great ride. He got the perfect position and slipped through lovely.

"A real fast six suits and an easy seven is probably ideal. He's a solid tough horse.

"He had a tough three-year-old year and had a few little setbacks. He was a good two-year-old."

The earlier winner at Leopardstown for Aidan O'Brien was Californiadreaming under his daughter Ana.

T.Hogan, trainer of Gordon Lord Byron, reported to the Clerk of Scales that his charge scoped badly post race.

(GC & EM)




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California need Dream no more after a win

Thu 16th Jun 2016, 19:08
Californiadreaming wins under Ana O'Brien
Californiadreaming wins under Ana O'Brien
(Healy Racing Photos)
On a big day for Ballydoyle over at Royal Ascot, Aidan O'Brien and team kept things ticking over on the home front as Californiadreaming (cheek-pieces on for the first time) claimed the Irish Stallion Farms European Breeders Fund Fillies Maiden at Leopardstown.

Eight times previously raced, the victorious Fastnet Rock filly, bred by the family under their Whisperview Trading Ltd banner, has seen her rating slide from 91 down to 79, but this was her day in the hands of Aidan O'Brien.

"She has been running consistently well and was entitled to win a race," said Joseph O'Brien after Californiadreaming had beaten promising newcomer Grainne's Dream by half a length.

"The race worked out perfectly for her. She got a bit of cover and the split a furlong-and-a-half to go. It suited her to have nowhere to go for a while - she's that kind of filly.

"She's a well-bred filly and is a winner now. I'd say she'll try to get some black-type if possible."

Well-backed favourite Smokey Quartz had to settle for fifth place.

The Stewards interviewed F.Birrane, trainer of Lightsome (GB), regarding the late arrival of the horse into the Parade Ring.

Evidence was heard from the trainer who stated that the horse got very fractious and was difficult to saddle.

Having considered the evidence, the Stewards were of the opinion that the trainer was in breach of Rule 32(ii) and having considered his record the trainer was fined €150 and reminded of his future responsibilities in this regard.

(GC & EM)

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O'Brien deflects praise

Thu 16th Jun 2016, 18:43
Aidan O'Brien
Aidan O'Brien
(Healy Racing Photos)
Aidan O'Brien made light of his achievement of reaching 50 Royal Ascot winners, describing himself as "only a small part of a very big team" after Even Song achieved his landmark success in the Ribblesdale Stakes.

O'Brien remains as humble and as dedicated as he was when Harbour Master gave the Ballydoyle trainer his first winner at Flat racing's biggest meeting in 1997.

"I'm only a small part of a very big team. Everybody works hard and I'm happy for everybody. I'm very grateful," he said.

He may have an abundance of talent to go racing with, but horses have to be trained and placed to perfection to produce the right results and Even Song is a prime example.

Though she had every right to go to the Investec Oaks at Epsom after her promising third on her seasonal debut at Newmarket, O'Brien felt the right route for her was to come to Royal Ascot and then hopefully go on to the Curragh for the Irish Oaks.

After all, he did have Minding for Epsom and the Qipco 1000 Guineas heroine duly doubled her Classic tally.

The decision to wait for the Ribblesdale proved correct as Even Song justified heavy market support. Sent off the 15-8 favourite, she was not too far behind a steady gallop set by Ted Durcan on Shall We.

Oaks runner-up Architecture ran keen from a wide draw under Frankie Dettori and gave herself little chance of going one better.

Roger Varian's maiden Ajman Princess had the perfect trip through on the rail and showed a determined attitude, keeping on gamely but she had no answer to Even Song's turn of foot.

Everything opened up in front of Ryan Moore and she soon put the race to bed when asked a question. Even Song powered a length and a half clear of Ajman Princess, with The Black Princess holding off the fast-finishing Queen's Trust for third.

O'Brien, who still has some way to go to overhaul the late Sir Henry Cecil's record of 75 winners, said: "It's unbelievable. She's a lovely filly. Ryan rode her in Newmarket in the Pretty Polly and thought she was the second best filly so we decided to leave her and come here instead of going to Epsom and running against Minding, so we're delighted she's won.

"It worked great and he gave her a lovely ride. He got a lovely run when he wanted.

"When it works, it's great and we were looking forward to seeing her run. Ryan thought after Newmarket she would get a mile and a half well and handle ease in the ground well and it all worked lovely for her.

"I was a little bit worried she might be a little bit green. She hasn't raced much and that was only her second run this year. I said that to Ryan, but he didn't have worries going out. We were thinking we might go back to the Irish Oaks if all went well here so that's what we might do."

He added: "She's a very well-bred filly. She's a half-sister to last year's Leger winner (Simple Verse). She's an exciting filly and a big mare so you'd imagine she'd improve and could be better next year."

Moore said: "She had a good turn of foot. We did go slow, but she relaxed well and was in tight quarters before we got a gap. She's a very good filly. Architecture had a rough trip backing up from the Oaks.

"This filly, we thought it was a good spot for her and Aidan has trained her with this mind. Let's hope he gets to 100 - that would be more special."



       




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Order Of St George (Ryan Moore)

Order Of St George bounds clear in the Gold Cup at Royal Ascot

 PICTURE: Edward Whitaker (racingpost.com/photos)

St George puts O'Brien in seventh heaven at Ascot

Report: Royal Ascot, Thursday

Gold Cup In Honour of The Queen's 90th Birthday (Group 1) 2m4f, 4yo+

ORDER OF ST GEORGE delivered trainer Aidan O’Brien a seventh Gold Cup success, answering any stamina doubts in definitive fashion in a messy running of the prestigious contest.

Still on a high after registering his 50th Royal Ascot victory in the previous race with Even Song, O’Brien was celebrating again after the 10-11 favourite overcame a troubled passage in a stop-start race under Ryan Moore.

A post-war record field of 18 left the gates but Mille Et Mille and jockey Thierry Thulliez grabbed the attention by setting a searching pace throughout much of the marathon trip.

Thulliez applied the brakes on the tearaway front-runner down the back straight and on the approach to the final bend the majority of the field in behind were stacked up and short of room.

At this point, Moore had a wall of horses in front of him but he angled out his mount and swinging for home the gaps came.

Once he had a clear run, Order Of St George charged up the home straight and was well on top at the line.

Sagaro Stakes winner Mizzou (10-1) finished strongly in second with Sheikhzayedroad (40-1) third and the enterprisingly ridden Mille Et Mille fourth at 33-1.

Order Of St George announced himself as a potential star stayer with an 11-length rout in last season’s Irish St Leger and much to the delight of his rider he handled the six-furlong step up in trip with aplomb.

“He’s a very exciting horse,” said Moore. “He has lots of class and it was a very messy race with 18 runners in there. He's just a class animal.”

O'Brien, who won four Gold Cup in a row with the mighty Yeats, said: “It was a little bit messy and rough and because he had never run over the trip before, Ryan had to put him to sleep. He's a horse that loves racing.”





 




 


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Just 6 behind now 



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Even Song (Ryan Moore) wins

Even Song (Ryan Moore) kicks clear of Ajman Princess in the Ribblesdale

 PICTURE: Edward Whitaker (racingpost.com/photos)

Even Song comes good 
for Moore and O’Brien

Report: Royal Ascot, Thursday

Ribblesdale Stakes (Group 2) 1m4f, 3yo fillies

FOLLOWING a quiet Wednesday, Ryan Moore and Aidan O'Brien were back in familiar territory here as Even Song gave the Ballydoyle machine their second victory of the meeting.

The daughter of Mastercraftsman, always well placed under Moore, struck the front with a furlong to run and kept on well to see off the pursuing Ajman Princess, with Queen's Trust and the fast-finishing The Black Princess in behind.

"She's a nice filly with a good turn of foot," said Moore. "We did go slow, but she relaxed well and when she got a gap she really quickened smartly."Even Song, the 15-8 favourite, was always going best under Moore, who did well to get his filly settled as the field blasted out of the gates. From there Ted Durcan set only a steady tempo on Shall We and his mount and Ajman Princess were in A1 position rounding the home turn. But the gaps opened nicely for the winner, who quickened up well and never looked like being caught, winning by a length and a half.

Ireland next

Even Song had finished third in the Pretty Polly Stakes at Newmarket on her previous start when not getting the cleanest of runs and, following this victory, the Irish Oaks could be next on the agenda according to O'Brien.

"After her run in Newmarket we decided to come straight here and it worked out. Before this we were thinking about going to the Irish Oaks if it went well."

The Roger Varian-trained Ajman Princess ran a cracker to fill second spot, while there was less than three lengths covering the next seven home, indicative of how slow they went through most of the contest. Oaks runner-up Architecture never threatened, finishing eighth.





Ryan Moore and Aidan O'Brien share a smile before the Ribblesdale Stakes



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Good run from Long Island Sound 3rd in the Tercentenary Stakes.



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Peace Envoy finished 4th in the Norfolk Stakes here is with Ryan Moore in the Royal Ascot parade ring before the race.



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A.P.O'Brien 10 Top Earning Horses  - Found into the top 5



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Found 2nd in the Prince of Wales great performance just nailed on the line


Found in the Royal Ascot Parade Ring




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Roly Poly in the Ascot Parade ring with Ryan onboard




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O'Brien has ground concern for St George

Wed 15th Jun 2016, 13:52
Order Of St George
Order Of St George
(Healy Racing Photos)
Aidan O'Brien has admitted his concerns about testing conditions ahead of Order Of St George's bid for Gold Cup glory at Royal Ascot.

The master of Ballydoyle has saddled a record six previous winners of the two-and-a-half-mile feature, with Yeats landing four consecutive renewals between 2006 and 2009.

Last season's impressive Irish St Leger hero Order Of St George dominated his rivals on his return to action in the Saval Beg at Leopardstown and is a warm order to continue his winning spree, but O'Brien is worried about soft ground for a horse who has yet to tackle further than a mile and three-quarters.

"Order Of St George handles a dig but going that far, you wouldn't want it too soft," he said.

"He is a class horse and was just ready to run when he ran in Leopardstown and hopefully he will have progressed from then.

"He does handle an ease, though."

Ryan Moore rides the four-year-old for just the second time and the first time since last June, when he was narrowly beaten by stable companion Bondi Beach in the Curragh Cup.

Moore said: " Order Of St George is a very exciting horse and hasn't done a lot wrong. It was a nice comeback win from him."

One horse unlikely to have any trouble with the anticipated taxing terrain is Peter Niven's stable star Clever Cookie.

The former jumper claimed his biggest Flat win to date when landing last month's Yorkshire Cup and is reported to be in fine form.

Niven said: " He seems grand and we are ready to go, I think.

"My old Ascot hoodoo has struck again with the draw (stall 17), but other than that we're very happy with him.

"He'll handle the ground and it just brings staying into the equation, which suits us.

"He's getting a bit older - like all of us - so it's probably taken him a bit longer to get going this year.

"It's a big day for him but we think he'll be up for it."


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SUPER CARAVAGGIO WINS COVENTRY

 


Caravaggio Winner number 49 for APOB At Royal Ascot






Caravaggio in the Royal Ascot Parade ring




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The Gurkha a close up 2nd in the St James Palace Stakes behind Galileo Gold who got the run on him a brave effort 


The Gurkha in The Royal Ascot Parade ring Team are confident




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Caravaggio - Ryan Moore

Caravaggio overcame being drawn away from the pace

 PICTURE: Mark Cranham (racingpost.com/photos)

Caravaggio scores for O'Brien and Moore

Report: Royal Ascot, Tuesday

Coventry Stakes (Group 2) 6f, 2yo colts and geldings

CARAVAGGIO won "two races" according to Ryan Moore when storming clear of Mehmas.

Moore had the son Scat Daddy buried in the midst of the nearside group, who appeared to be trailing by some distance at half way behind their farside counterparts.

But Caravaggio careered to the front of his own group before tacking across the course to give O'Brien a record eighth winner in the race.

"He had to win two races today," said Moore, who was previously successful aboard Power in this race six years ago.

"The other side were always ahead of us and I was stuck with horses around me not bringing me far enough. He has had to go by them earlier than I would have liked. He then went by Mehmas there and he has gone and won his race again."

Moore added: "I was really worried about the ground today but fortunately he has won despite everything. He is very good to win two races in one go."

New 2,000 Guineas favourite

Paddy Power were most impressed with Caravaggio, cutting him to  4-1 for next year's Qipco 2,000 Guineas while Sky Bet offer double that price.

O'Brien admitted he had shared Moore's concerns abot Caravaggio's stamina at this early stage of his career on the rain-softened Ascot turf.

"We were worried that he was so quick that we maybe should have had him in the Norfolk when the ground got so soft because he is very very rapid at home," the trainer said. "When a horse is that quick you are never sure that they are going to last out over six in soft ground but, he got it and he got it well."

'good chance' Caravaggio will stay a mile

Caravaggio's winning time of 1 minute 16.36 seconds was the slowest for the race since 2000.

OBrien felt afterwards that such was the colt's build and power that the Guineas trip would be within his compass in time.

"He has a great mind, he settles well and he is very clear-winded and he has all the right things," he said. "He is a lovely-sized horse and very powerful so there is a big chance."


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Sires Tables Updated - Galileo Cantering - Power down to 3rd - Zoffany down to 2nd



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A 5th British Champion Trainer title is on the cards for Aidan he has a nice lead



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On The eve of Royal Ascot I had to come up with something a bit special 




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Pretty Perfect Impressive in Munster Oaks

Sun 12th Jun 2016, 16:35
Pretty Perfect and Colm O'Donoghue
Pretty Perfect and Colm O'Donoghue
"She ran very bad in the Guineas and that threw us but maybe we ran her too short back. She stays very well though and he (Colm O'Donoghue) was very happy with her there," said Aidan O'Brien after his Pretty Perfect prevailed in the Group 3 Coral.ie Munster Oaks Stakes.

Three to one shot Pretty Perfect made all and she was ridden two furlongs out.

The daughter of Galileo soon asserted and driven out she stayed on well inside the final furlong to oblige by four lengths from the favourite Shamreen.

Ballydoyle also had the third home, Best In The World, whilst Hugo Palmer's raiderTwitch finished fourth.

"The Guineas was a hard race to work out because we ran Coolmore in it and she ran very bad too," Aidan O'Brien.

"We're delighted with her today and she'll maybe go to an Irish Oaks now. She seems to stay well. Best In The World ran well too and stays well too."


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Ballydoyle an Equine Power Station Since 1951 - Digital Art piece by Me

Loving how that turned out there really is no other place on the planet that can 

boast the success and history that Ballydoyle has an Irish Jewell





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General foils the gamble on Tony

 By Donal Murphy

Sat 11th Jun 2016, 17:56
General McArthur and Seamie Heffernan get the better of Tony The Gent and Colin Keane
General McArthur and Seamie Heffernan get the better of Tony The Gent and Colin Keane
(Healy Racing Photos)
General Macarthur foiled the gamble on Tony The Gent in the last at Navan, the Irish Stallion Farms EBF Race.

Fourth in a Listed contest at the Curragh last Saturday, the Aidan O'Brien trained victor was sent off at 11/4 this afternoon.

Settled towards rear by Seamie Heffernan, the son of War Front took closer order from three furlongs out.

It looked like he might get caught in a pocket with two furlongs to go, but he got the room he needed over a furlong out. He was then soon ridden, sweeping to the front in the closing stages, before going on to score by three parts of a length.

Tony The Gent, who hit the front at the two furlong pole, had to settle for second underColin Keane for Ger Lyons.

He was as big as 7/2 this morning, opening on-course at 5/2 before going off the clear 13/8 favourite.

Al Mohalhal, who was 6/4 last night, proved friendless with punters and he finished a well-beaten fifth at 3/1.

Seamie Heffernan said afterwards: "He just got away with the ground. He's a horse with plenty of ability, and has always showed it."

Additional reporting by Alan Magee


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Air Force Blue enters Commonwealth Cup picture


Air Force Blue has been supplemented for the Commonwealth Cup at Royal Ascot on Friday.

The Aidan O'Brien-trained son of War Front has been added at a cost of £35,000 and drops back to six furlongs after disappointing in both the English and Irish 2000 Guineas.

He could be joined in the line-up by stablemates Washington DC and Waterloo Bridge.

Leading domestic fancies Quiet Reflection, Log Out Island and Gifted Master are still in contention amongst the 18 horses confirmed for the Group One.

Mark Johnston will rely upon Buratino in the absence of Lumiere,

The Group One-winning filly was poised to revert to sprinting after she disappointed over a mile in the 1000 Guineas at Newmarket, but Johnston told racinguk.com: "She's just not been sparkling at home. We're just not happy with her."

American filly Acapulco is still present, despite holding an entry in the King's Stand Stakes on Tuesday.




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Moore success beckons for Ryan

  • Last Updated: June 9 2016, 16:38 BST

Ryan Moore set a new best last season when becoming the first rider since the war to record nine winners during Royal Ascot and has high hopes of another successful week.

Caravaggio (left) boasts strong form heading into the meeting

Caravaggio (left) boasts strong form heading into the meeting

The former champion considers French 2000 Guineas winner The Gurkha as perhaps his best chance this time around, in what looks like being a red-hot St James's Palace Stakes on Tuesday.

He said: "Last year seems a long time ago now. I thought going into the meeting last year that I had three with definite chances but two of them got beat and only one won."

When asked how it felt to ride the record number of post-war winners at a single Royal Ascot, beating the previous record of eight set by Lester Piggott and Pat Eddery, Moore said: "They were different eras and Royal Ascot is a different meeting now to how it was back then."

He went on: "I am lucky to be riding for powerful stables and will have some nice rides. There is nothing I can think of that will definitely win but I should have some solid chances. Miss Temple City is something to look forward to in the Duke of Cambridge Stakes.

"I think the St James's Palace Stakes and the Prince of Wales's Stakes are the two most exciting races of the week.

"I think my mount (in the St James's Palace) The Gurkha should be able to handle both softer and faster ground.

"I haven't spoken to Aidan (O'Brien) yet about whether Found runs in the Prince of Wales's Stakes.

"Caravaggio (Coventry Stakes) was very impressive when he won at the Curragh and it was probably the best performance seen by a two-year-old so far this season.

"Order Of St George (favourite for the Gold Cup) is a very exciting horse and hasn't done a lot wrong. It was a nice comeback win from him.

"I am not sure yet whether I will be riding Dartmouth in the Hardwicke Stakes. He has done nothing wrong with two wins the season. I have been lucky enough to ride regularly for the Queen and to ride a winner for her at Royal Ascot is always extra special. It's just nice to be involved.

"At the moment, I would say my best chance of success next week is with The Gurkha."



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Throwback Thursday - Were on the verge of Royal Ascot who ever could forget Royal Ascot Legend YEATS




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3 Nice Galileo's to debut at Leopardstown tomorrow including the Full Brother of Epsom Oaks winner WAS



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APOB Top Earning Horses of All Time & 2016 update




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Timeform Global Rankings European Division Ballydoyle Spotlight & News June 8th



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The Gurkha to Face English & Irish Guineas Winners


An exciting clash between the winners of the English, French and Irish 2000 Guineas remains on the cards in the St James's Palace Stakes.

Hugo Palmer's Newmarket winner Galileo Gold, his Curragh conqueror Awtaad and Aidan O'Brien's Deauville hero The Gurkha are set to light up the opening day of Royal Ascot.

Faster conditions are expected to help Galileo Gold and connections will be hoping there is not too much rain between now and then

Harry Herbert, racing advisor to owners Al Shaqab Racing, said: "All racing fans are looking forward to the opening day of Royal Ascot.

"If everything goes to the St James's Palace Stakes sound and well, a cracking race will be in store and it is what the race is all about. It will be a proper championship race.

"He has the right to improve as he is only lightly raced but it will be a different race on better ground."

O'Brien has also left in Air Vice Marshall, Bravery, Claudio Monteverdi and Long Island Sound among a possible field of 15.

Clive Cox's Zonderland, Richard Fahey's Ribchester, Michael O'Callaghan's Blue De Vega, Simon Crisford's First Selection and Charlie Appleby's Emotionless are other notable contenders.



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Minding leads the way in The Cartier Racing Awards 
 
With the 2016 Flat season now in full swing, early front-runners have emerged for awards at European racing's equivalent of the Oscars.
 
The 26th annual Cartier Racing Awards will be presented at a glittering ceremony before an invited audience of 300 at the Dorchester Hotel, London, England, on the evening of Tuesday, November 8, 2016.
 
The Cartier Racing Awards were established in 1991 to reward excellence in horseracing. There are eight equine awards, ranging from the Cartier Horse Of The Year to the Cartier Two-Year-Old Colt and Cartier Two-Year-Old Filly.
 
In addition, the Cartier/Daily Telegraph Award of Merit goes to the person or persons who, in the opinion of the special 16-strong Cartier Jury, has/have done the most for European racing and/or breeding either over their lifetime or within the past 12 months.
 
European horseracing's top awards are delivered through a tried and tested combination of points earned by horses in Pattern races (30%), combined at the end of season with the opinions of a panel of racing journalists (35%) and votes from readers of Racing Post and The Daily Telegraph plus Channel 4 Racing viewers (35%).
 
Minding (112 points) has already won two Classics, with the Aidan O'Brien-trained filly triumphant decisively in the QIPCO 1000 Guineas at Newmarket and the Investec Oaks at Epsom Downs. Her one reversal this year came when she was beaten a head by Jet Setting(40), the pair clear, in the Tattersalls Irish 1,000 Guineas at the Curragh.
 
The daughter of Galileo is out in front in the battle for the Cartier Horse Of The Year accolade and also has a significant lead in the Cartier Three-Year-Old Filly division. Minding is up for a second Cartier Racing Award, having been crowned Cartier Two-Year-Old Filly in 2015.
 
It was a Derby double-header on the weekend of June 4 & 5, with the Aga Khan's Harzand(56), from Dermot Weld's stables in Ireland, taking the Investec-sponsored Classic in good style from two O'Brien-trained runners, US Army Ranger (32) and Idaho (18), over 12 furlongs at Epsom Downs on Saturday.
 
Almanzor (42), trained by Jean-Claude Rouget, was successful in France's version, the Prix du Jockey Club, over an extended 10 furlongs at Chantilly on Sunday
 
Al Shaqab Racing's Galileo Gold (64), from the Newmarket yard of Hugo Palmer, heads the Cartier Three-Year-Old Colt division, having landed the opening British Classic of the season, the QIPCO 2000 Guineas at Newmarket. He then finished runner-up to the Kevin Prendergast-trained Awtaad (32) in the Irish equivalent at the Curragh.
 
Currently just topping the Cartier Older Horse division is Dariyan (70), winner of the Group One Prix Ganay, held at Saint-Cloud on May 1 this year as Longchamp is being redeveloped. The four-year-old son of Shamardal, trained by Alain de Royer-Dupre, then came second to Japanese raider A Shin Hikari, the wide-margin winner of the Group One Prix d'Ispahan at Chantilly on May 16.
 
He is closely pursued by Postponed (68), who followed up his decisive victory in the Group One Dubai Sheema Classic Presented by Longines at Meydan, UAE, in March with an impressive success in the Group One Queen Elizabeth II Coronation Cup (Sponsored by Investec) at Epsom Downs on Derby Day, June 4.
 
The lead in the Cartier Sprinter category is currently shared by Magical Memory,Profitable and Quiet Reflection, who have all taken Group Two contests and have 24 points each.
 
The Aga Khan's Vazirabad (28), unbeaten on his last seven starts, heads the Cartier Stayer category following a pair of Group Two victories, in front of Group Two Betway Yorkshire Cup hero Clever Cookie (20).
 
Harry Herbert, Cartier's racing consultant, commented: "The early markers in the race for Cartier Racing Awards honours have been laid down and 2016 promises to be another fascinating year.
 
"We now look forward to the greatest five days in European horseracing, Royal Ascot, which frequently plays a pivotal role in determining Cartier champions."
 
Cartier Racing Awards - points in Pattern races up to and including Sunday, June 5, 2016
 
Cartier Horse Of The Year
Minding  112
Dariyan   70
Postponed  68
Galileo Gold  64
Harzand  56
 
Cartier Older Horse
Dariyan   70
Postponed  68
Garlingari  44
Found   40
Tryster   34
Euro Charline  34
Fascinating Rock 34
 
Cartier Three-Year-Old Colt
Galileo Gold  64
Harzand  56
Almanzor  42
The Gurkha  32
Awtaad   32
US Army Ranger 32
 
Cartier Three-Year-Old Filly
Minding  112
Jet Setting  40
La Cressonniere  32
Jemayel  32
Nathra    24
Camprock  24
Ballydoyle  24
Quiet Reflection 24
Architecture   24
 
Cartier Sprinter
Magical Memory 24
Profitable  24
Quiet Reflection 24
Son Cesio   20
Mobsta   16
Gifted Master  12
 
Cartier Stayer
Vazirabad   28
Clever Cookie  20
Dartmouth  16
Fly With Me   16
Mizzou   8
Curbyourenthusiasm 8
Bondi Beach  8
Pallasator  8



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APOB Top Earning Horses of All Time & 2016 update



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4 Time group One winner MINDING


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APOB Career stats updated



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Aidan Closing the Gap




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Updated Sires Tables after weekend racing - Galileo over 1 million clear Power 2nd & Zoffany Clear

 


 




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Derby Horses 

Port Douglas


US Army Ranger





Idaho 

Shogun 


Deauville




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The Famous Five




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Found in the Paddock at Epsom - David Robinson







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Galileo's Greatest Daughters all 4 time group one winners


  

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Minding - Epsom Oaks Digital Art Piece by me



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Minding wins a 6th Oaks for Aidan & a 5th for Team Coolmore 


Australia (right)

Australia: 2014 Derby hero is a son of Ouija Board

 PICTURE: Patrick McCann (racingpost.com/photos)

How do Oaks winners fare in the breeding shed

FOUR of the last ten Oaks winners with progeny of racing age have subsequently had offspring tackle the Epsom Classics and one of those, Ouija Board, had Derby success through her son Australia.
Two more runners will this year be aiming to join the exclusive club of Epsom Classic winners out of an Oaks heroine.

Somehow, a daughter of Fastnet Rock, will be lining up in today's Oaks just as her dam, Alexandrova, did ten years ago. Tomorrow, Sir Michael Stoute's Ulysses will be tackling the colts' Classic over the same terrain as his 2007 Oaks-winning dam Light Shift.

However, following in the family's footsteps at Epsom isn't the be-all and end-all, so how have recent Oaks winners fared in the breeding shed?


LOVE DIVINE won the first Oaks run this century - beating Melikah, the dam of Moonlight Magic - and has gone on to have a fruitful career in the paddocks, most notably with her second foal Sixties Icon, who finished seventh in Sir Percy's Derby before going on to claim Classic honours of his own in the 2006 St Leger. He would later carve out a successful second career as a stallion and is standing his eighth season at Norman Court Stud at a fee of £5,000.

Imagine, the 2001 Oaks winner, has also gone on to make her mark as a broodmare, producing five black-type performers including Group 2 winner Kitty Matcham. However, the sole occasion her progeny encountered Epsom didn't end well when Horatio Nelson, her most promising son, suffered a fatal injury in the 2006 Derby.

The 2002 winner Kazzia went on to produce a trio of stakes-class performers, the most successful of whom was Dubai Sheema Classic winner Eastern Anthem. Her Listed-winning daughter Kailani was the only one of her offspring to go down the Epsom Classic route, but could manage only seventh behind Was in the 2012 Oaks.

Casual Look recorded one of her two career successes in the 2003 renewal of the Oaks, but as yet none of her progeny have attempted to follow in her footsteps. There is still time for Casual Look to see her offspring bid for Epsom glory as she has a 2014 Oasis Dream filly and a 2015 Frankel colt set to represent her in the future.

Next up came the incomparable Ouija Board, who recorded the first of her seven top-level victories with a seven-length victory in the 2004 Oaks. That wasn't her last impact on Epsom as Australia, her fourth foal, went on to claim Derby honours in 2014. That was the first of three Group 1 wins for the son of Galileo, who is standing his second season at Coolmore at a fee of €50,000.

Eswarah claimed the 2005 renewal, but none of the seven runners she has since produced has made it to Epsom. Her daughter Firdaws did manage third place in the 2011 Group 1 Fillies' Mile and in 2015 Eswarah produced a Sea The Stars filly, so there is still chance for her to add to her Oaks story.

Next came Alexandrova, who ran out a six-length winner at Epsom in 2006 before going on to complete a hat-trick of Oaks successes in the Irish and Yorkshire equivalents. Since retiring to the paddocks she has produced three winners from four runners, including Group 2 scorer Alex My Boy and Somehow, who won the Listed Cheshire Oaks and will bid to provide Aidan O'Brien with a sixth Oaks win when she lines up today.

Another Oaks heroine due to be represented at Epsom this weekend is Light Shift, who claimed an emotional victory for Sir Henry Cecil - for whom she was providing an eighth Oaks - when battling to a half-length win over Peeping Fawn in 2007.

She has produced two winners from two runners to date and her profile as a broodmare could be about to improve dramatically as one of her sons, Ulysses, a colt by Galileo, is well fancied for tomorrow's Derby having run out an easy winner of a Newbury maiden last time.

In 2008 Look Here sprang something of a surprise to give Ralph Beckett the first of his two Oaks victories, overhauling Moonstone, the dam of Derby hope US Army Ranger. Look Here has produced three offspring, including Hereawi, who won a Doncaster maiden earlier in the year, and the two-year-old Here And Now, a colt by Dansili, who is yet to race but is in training with Beckett.

The final Oaks winner to have progeny to hit the track is Sariska, who stayed on gamely to defeat Midday in 2009. Her sole produce to have run, Snow Moon, was the impressive winner of a Nottingham maiden on her second start and could be set to tackle the Group 2 Ribblesdale Stakes at Royal Ascot.

There is a family tie to Sariska in this year's Derby as her half-sister Gull Wing is the dam of likely favourite Wings Of Desire.

The remaining Oaks winners to go on to have careers as broodmares but whose progeny have yet to race include Snow Fairy, who has a two-year-old filly by Elusive Pimpernel named Belle De Neige, Dancing Rain, who has a two-year-old filly by Frankel named Rainswept, as well as a yearling filly and colt foal, both by New Approach, and Taghrooda, who produced her first foal earlier this year in the shape of a Kingman filly.

Whoever triumphs in Friday's Oaks will instantly become one of the most sought after broodmare prospects around, but a good deal of patience will be required before we find out if the first past the post will be able to achieve the rare feat of winning a Classic and producing a Classic winner.


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O'Brien completes famous day at Leop'stown

Fri 3rd Jun 2016, 21:32
The Major General and Michael Hussey (second right)
The Major General and Michael Hussey (second right)
(Healy Racing Photos)
Aidan O’Brien’s day couldn’t have gone much better today as the Champion Trainer added to Minding’s famous Oaks win with a five-timer at Leopardstown today as his The Major General led home a 1-2-3 for in the Listed King George V Cup.

O’Brien wasn’t present at the Dublin venue on a memorable day for the Ballydoyle maestro. Ballydoyle’s ‘home’ wins came from the Donnacha O’Brien partnered War Decree, Cockatoo Island and Order Of St George while Udogo’s win (under Ana O’Brien) came via son Joseph O’Brien’s Pilltown operation.

The Major General’s win (at the expense of stablemates Claudio Monteverdi and Lieutenant General) was also a first Listed success for Ballydoyle based Michael Husseywhose biggest career win was gained at Group 3 level in 2013.

Joseph O’Brien was representing his father and following The Major General’s win, stated “he's improving with racing, although it was a messy race and then they sprinted. I'm delighted for Mick (Hussey) and he gave him a lovely ride.

"The first three could all line up at Ascot, with the King Edward, the Tercentenary and the King George Handicap all options."

The 1-2-3 was also the second such feat of the evening for Ballydoyle, whose War Decree led also home two stablemates in the opener.

By Tom Weekes, quotes from Alan Magee


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Minding (Ryan Moore) wins The Oaks

Minding (right): Oaks heroine is a daughter of top class miler Lillie Langtry

 PICTURE: Edward Whitaker (racingpost.com/photos)

Minding secures second Oaks success for Galileo

WITH a thrilling one-and-three-quarter length victory in the Oaks, 1,000 Guineas heroine Minding became the second winner of the Epsom fillies' classic for her sire Galileo following the victory of Was in the 2012 renewal.

Coolmore's seven-time champion sire has taken his dominance to even greater lengths this season as the 2001 Derby hero has been present in the pedigrees of all English and French Classic winners to date.

Crowned last season's champion European two-year-old filly following victories in the Fillies' Mile and Moyglare Stud Stakes, Minding got her three-year-old season off to the perfect start with a breathtaking performance in the 1,000 Guineas.As well as dual Classic winner Minding, he is sire of The Gurkha, the five-and-a-half length victor of the Poule d'Essai des Poulains (French 2,000 Guineas) and damsire to both 2,000 Guineas hero Galileo Gold and Poule d'Essai des Pouliches (French 1,000 Guineas) scorer La Cressonniere.

After a narrow defeat in the Irish equivalent, she returned to the winner's enclosure on Friday with a remarkable display of guts and talent that saw her experience a far-from-ideal passage yet still run out a most convincing winner.

She is the second foal bred by Orpendale, Chelston and Wynatt out of the top class filly Lillie Langtry, winner of the 2010 Coronation Stakes and Matron Stakes for the same connections.

By Danehill Dancer, Lillie Langtry is a half-sister to the 1m Listed winner Count Of Limonade, a son of Duke Of Marmalade, and Lady Hawkfield, the once-raced dam of last year's 1m2f Group 3 Sandown Classic Trial scorer Master Apprentice, from the family of dual French Group 2 scorer Lead On Time and champion European sprinter Great Commotion.

Since retiring to the paddocks at the end of her three-year-old campaign Lillie Langtry has been covered by Galileo every season, resulting in four fillies and she was again covered by the superstar stallion last year.

Kissed By Angels, her first foal in 2012,  won last year's 7f Group 3 Derrinstown Stud 1,000 Guineas Trial before finishing last in the Irish Oaks, after which she was exported to Japan.

Aside from Minding, the other filly of racing age is the two-year-old How. She was placed third behind the Aidan O'Brien-trained stablemate Brave Anna on her most recent start in a 6f Curragh maiden.


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Order Of St George: returned to action in the Saval Beg on Friday evening

Order Of St George: won the Saval Beg Stakes on Friday evening

 PICTURE: Patrick McCann (racingpost.com/photos

Order Of St George breezes to Saval Beg win

Report: Leopardstown, Friday
Seamus & Rosemary McGrath Memorial Saval Beg Stakes (Listed), 1m6f, 4yo+

ASCOT GOLD CUP favourite Order Of St George enjoyed a straightforward return to action on Friday evening when breezing to victory in the Listed Saval Beg Stakes.

The four-year-old justified prohibitive odds to provide Donnacha O'Brien with a first treble on the card and is now as short as 6-4 with Paddy Power and Betfair to land the Royal Ascot event.

Billy Lee attempted to make all aboard Fact Or Folklore and the pair pinched a five-length lead along the back straight though O'Brien always had the second favourite in sight.

Making his move on the outside of the field, Order Of St George ranged upsides Fact Or Folklore just inside the final furlong and stayed on strongly to the line to secure a four-and-a-half length success.

Joseph O'Brien, representing father and trainer Aidan O'Brien, said: "That was the ideal preparation for Ascot. The most important thing about today was that he settled and he settled brilliantly. I was expecting him to get a bit more tired than he did because Dad was a bit worried about his fitness, but he had to come here if he was going to get to Ascot.

"Donnacha said he handled the quick ground fine. He handles quick and soft ground, he's just a very good horse."


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Double up Donnacha brings home Cockatoo Island 

Fri 3rd Jun 2016, 19:49
Cockatoo Island and Donnacha O'Brien
Cockatoo Island and Donnacha O'Brien 
(Healy Racing Photos)
Team Ballydoyle’s excellent day continued in the William Fry Maiden at Leopardstown today as trainer Aidan O’Brien and his jockey son Donnacha O’Brien completed Dublin doubles, with Cockatoo Island.

Trainer O’Brien was at Epsom where his outstanding filly Minding won today’s Oaks but things were left in good hands at Leopardstown Donnacha initially steered War Decree to win the opener before landing the next maiden with Cockatoo Island, which made most of the running for his win.

Joseph O’Brien represented his father afterwards and stated “the way he ran the first day you would think he would get a mile and a quarter but he just didn't stay the last day.

“I'd imagine he'll go for a handicap next, and fast ground is probably essential for him."

By Tom Weekes, quotes from Alan Magee


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Ballydoyle complete 1-2-3 in opener 

Fri 3rd Jun 2016, 18:56
War Decree and Donnacha O'Brien
War Decree and Donnacha O'Brien
(Healy Racing Photos)
An hour and a half after Minding’s excellent Oaks win, her trainer Aidan O’Brien landed a 1-2-3 in the opening Irish Stallion Farms European Breeders Fund Maiden at Leopardstown today, as War Decree scored under his son Donnacha O’Brien.

The son of War Front tracked leader Orderofthegarter before moving past his stablemate rival with a furlong to race, and eventually staying on well for a length and a half win.Orderofthegarter was followed further back in third by O’Brien’s other runner Sir Edwin Landseer.

Joseph O’Brien, representing the Ballydoyle trained winner, later stated “he been working nicely at home and the three of them ran well and you would have to be delighted.

"There is a chance he may go to Ascot - War Command won this (in 2013) and dropped back to six, so it can be done."

By Tom Weekes, quotes from Alan Magee


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MINDING weaves her magic at Epsom

Fri 3rd Jun 2016, 17:01
Ryan Moore
Ryan Moore
(Healy Racing Photos)
Minding overcame adversity to claim her second Classic success of the year in the Investec Oaks.

Aidan O'Brien's filly was a stunning winner of the 1000 Guineas at Newmarket at the start of May and while she suffered defeat when chasing the Guineas double at the Curragh less than a fortnight ago, she was the 10-11 favourite to get back on the winning trail at Epsom.

With his mount stepping up half a mile in distance, Ryan Moore rode a patient race, but found himself in a spot of bother rounding the turn for home. For a moment it looked as though Minding would have nowhere to go, but when the gap did come, she picked up quite brilliantly and was well on top at the line.

Architecture ran an excellent race to fill the runner-up spot, a length and three-quarters away, with Harlequeen back in third.

"I just had nowhere to go, but the filly got me out of trouble," said Moore.

"She was much the best (horse). She's a very good filly."

Minding was originally set to head straight for Epsom after her Newmarket triumph, but was drafted in as a late substitute for stable companion Ballydoyle in the Irish 1,000 Guineas.

While her narrow defeat to Jet Setting at the Curragh was a big surprise, connections revealed she had suffered a minor head injury in the starting stalls but were happy to let her turn out just 12 days later.

For a moment it looked as though the Hugo Palmer-trained Architecture may have stolen a march on the favourite, but it is a measure of Minding's ability that she managed to overcome a severely troubled passage and still win with plenty in hand.

Moore added: "I had a charmed run, initially, but then they boys all wanted to get moving and came in on top of me. Her class got her out of trouble but she'll be effective over shorter trips, for sure."











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Seventh Heaven in the paddock From David Robertson



Somehow in the paddock before saddling From David Robertson



Minding in the paddock before saddling From David Robertson




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At this Time of year we have to Remember the King of Epsom ST NIC who conquered it 3 times in a row so sadly missed



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Australian Champion Vancouver Retired

From thoroughbreddailynews


Vancouver_ShandonCundiff

Vancouver at Ballydoyle | Shandon Cundiff

Australian champion 2-year-old Vancouver (Aus)(Medaglia d’Oro–Skates {Aus}, by Danehill), who capped his unbeaten juvenile campaign last year with a win in the G1 Golden Slipper, has been retired and will enter stud at Coolmore Australia later this year. Vancouver was targeting the G1 Diamond Jubilee S. at Royal Ascot for trainer Aidan O’Brien, but missed his intended European debut in The Curragh’s G3 Greenlands S. at The Curragh two weeks ago after returning an unsatisfactory blood picture. O’Brien noted that the 3-year-old’s condition failed to sufficiently improve.

“Vancouver’s unsatisfactory blood picture precluded us from running him in the Greenlands S. at the Curragh last Saturday week,” said O’Brien. “His bloods failed to improve as quickly as we might have hoped so he missed more work last week and this week. Unfortunately we’ve now run out of time to get him ready for the Diamond Jubilee at Royal Ascot and the July Cup. It’s very disappointing as he looked very special on what we’d seen of him at home and we were looking forward to running him.”

Bred by John Camilleri’s Fairway Thoroughbreds, Vancouver was bought by trainer Gai Waterhouse for A$185,000 at the Magic Millions Gold Coast Yearling Sale in 2014. The dark bay opened his career with a win in the Listed Breeders’ Plate–a race that has produced sires like Sebring (Aus), Snitzel (Aus), Charge Forward (Aus) and Choisir (Aus)–earning ‘TDN Rising Star’ status. He followed up in the G3 Canonbury S. and the G2 Todman S. in the autumn before overcoming the extreme outside barrier 16 to win the Golden Slipper. After that win, Vancouver was purchased by a group including Coolmore and the China Horse Club. Debuting in the China Horse Club silks at three, Vancouver finished fourth in Rosehill’s G3 San Domenico S., after which he was sent to O’Brien at Ballydoyle in Ireland to prepare for his European campaign. He retires with four wins from five starts and earnings of A$2,368,250.

Coolmore Australia’s Tom Magnier said, “It’s a major disappointment that Vancouver won’t be running at Royal Ascot but he is proving very popular with breeders, so we’re keen to get him here as soon as possible. He’ll enter quarantine in Newmarket next week and will be on the farm here in Coolmore Australia by mid-July.”


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O'Brien Duo still on course for French Derby

Thu 2nd Jun 2016, 18:26
Black Sea
Black Sea
(Healy Racing Photos)
Aidan O'Brien could still be represented by Black Sea and Bravery in the Prix du Jockey Club at Chantilly on Sunday.

Black Sea was unplaced in the Dante when last seen, while Bravery ran a fine race to be fourth in the Irish Guineas.

The big news on Thursday was that Roger Charlton has taken the bold step to switch up to Group One company with Imperial Aviator following his easy success in the London Gold Cup at Newbury last month.

The Paco Boy colt had previously beaten Ulysses, who is a leading fancy for Saturday's Investec Derby at Epsom, in a Leicester maiden in April.

The Gianluca Bietolini-trained Dicton was also added to the field at a cost of 72,000 euros after finishing third in the French 2000 Guineas.

The Harry Dunlop-trained Robin Of Navan stands his ground along with John Gosden's Foundation and the Richard Hannon-trained Ventura Storm.

A total of 17 runners are still in the mix with Zarak, Mekhtaal and the Andre Fabre-trained pair of Talismanic and Floodlight also among the contenders ahead of Friday's final declaration stage.


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Aidan O'Brien admits uncertainty over Oaks trip for Classic winner Minding



  • Thursday 02 June 2016
  • News

Aidan O'Brien admits he is as much in the dark about Minding's ability to stay the Investec Oaks trip as everybody else.

The Galileo filly has already proven herself to be brilliant over a mile but steps up another four furlongs at Epsom tomorrow.

Having won the 1000 Guineas at Newmarket, she was beaten in the Irish equivalent by Jet Setting but it came to light after the race that she had banged her head in the stalls, injuring her sinus.

"She's in good form and we're happy with her since the last day. Obviously she hasn't done much, but we're happy with her," said O'Brien.

"We can't be sure about the trip by any means. She has form in soft ground but going a mile and a half first time, you wouldn't be sure about it.

"It's her first time over a mile and a half and we're looking forward to seeing her run over it."

O'Brien has three strings to his bow and both Somehow and Seventh Heaven won their trials at Chester and Lingfield respectively.

"Somehow was very green at Chester. She handles an ease in the ground and it looks like one that will get a mile and a half," said the Ballydoyle maestro.

"We're hoping that she has learned a lot from Chester and we think that she has come forward.

"Seventh Heaven looked green and a bit at sea in front at Lingfield. She was probably more green than anything.

"We think she has come forward. I don't think she wants the ground to get too soft, but she's in good form."

Ryan Moore is on Minding and is not too put off by her defeat at the Curragh.

He told www.betfair.com: "My high opinion of this filly is well-known and I was gutted that she got beaten in the Irish 1,000 Guineas. But it was a late decision to run in the race after Ballydoyle was found to be off-colour and the fact that she banged her head coming out of the stalls didn't help.

"However, ultimately, I think that she just found the ground too soft for her against a filly who relished the conditions, and the pair did pull 10 lengths clear of the third. So, yes, you could say that she hasn't had an ideal preparation for this race and that she would want better ground, though it can dry out very quickly here. And she obviously has her stamina to prove.

"Turret Rocks is the main form danger to me on her Boussac second and she ran well enough when sixth to Minding in the Guineas, but she has always been thought of as a good or fast ground filly so that would have to be a concern."


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US Army Ranger

US Army Ranger: will be ridden by Ryan Moore in the Derby

 

O'Brien responsible 
for five of Derby 16

TRAINER Aidan O'Brien is responsible for five of the 16 runners declared for Saturday's Investec Derby as he seeks a fourth win in the Epsom Classic in five years.

O'Brien did not declare Beacon Rock and Bravery - who were the only two horses to come out at the declaration stage - but he will be represented by US Army Ranger, Deauville, Port Douglas, Idaho and Shogun.

Chester Vase winner US Army Ranger, who was a drifter on Betfair earlier in the week, will be partnered by Ryan Moore, while there will be a first British Classic ride for Aidan's teenage son Donnacha O'Brien, who takes the mount on 40-1 outsider Shogun.

Donnacha will be hoping to emulate the success of his brother Joseph, who famously won the Derby at Epsom on two occasions aboard Camelot in 2012 and Australia in 2014 and is now set to embark upon a training career.

Aidan O'Brien, who won the Derby for three years in succession between 2012 and 2014, saw his strangehold on the race broken by John Gosden's Golden Horn last season, and the Newmarket trainer is responsible for a leading fancy this year in the shape of Dante Stakes winner Wings Of Desire.

Open betting

Only three times this century have more than 16 runners gone to post in the Derby and this year's edition looks like a particularly open affair, with no horse boasting outstanding claims on form.

In an open betting heat, US Army Ranger and Wings Of Desire are battling it out at the head of the market and can both be backed at 5-1, while Cloth Of Stars and Ulysses are the only other horses in the race trading below 10-1.

Ulysses, who boasts a Classic pedigree being by Derby winner Galileo and out of Oaks winner Light Shift, will be ridden by Andrea Atzeni and the jockey is hopeful that the regally-bred colt can provide him with a first Derby success.

"Everyone likes Ulysses in the yard and they've always thought a lot of him, even as a two-year-old. I know it's a big step up from a maiden to a Derby, but it's been done before and he's trained by Sir Michael, who knows how to win the race," Atzeni said.

"He's a beautifully bred horse and the couple of times I've sat on him he's given me a very good feel. He's got a good mind, is a good mover and will definitely stay; I would not swap him for anything."


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Timeform Global Rankings European Division Ballydoyle Spotlight & News update 2nd June




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US Army Ranger

US Army Ranger: successful in the Chester Vase last time

 PICTURE: Patrick McCann (racingpost.com/photos

Moore to partner US 
Army Ranger in Derby

RYAN MOORE will partner market drifter US Army Ranger in the Investec Derby, trainer Aidan O'Brien-trained revealed to the Racing Post on Wednesday evening.

Coolmore's retained rider, who has won the Derby on Workforce and Ruler Of The World, will team up with Chester Vase winner US Army Ranger despite that colt's odds having been pushed out to 11-2 at the same time stablemate Deauville was forced into a general 8-1.

Idaho will be ridden by Seamie Heffernan, with Colm O'Donoghue on Port Douglas. The trainer's son Donnacha O'Brien will have his first Derby ride on Shogun.The mount on Deauville has gone to Jamie Spencer, the first-choice jockey for horses owned in Britain by Fitri Hay, who shares the colt with the Coolmore partners.

The master of Ballydoyle, who also revealed Moore will be on Bravery in Sunday's Prix du Jockey Club, in which Black Sea could also line up, added: "A decision about Beacon Rock being declared for the Derby will be made in the morning. He may wait for the King Edward VII Stakes at Ascot."

Very much on course for the Derby is Kirsten Rausing's Goodwood winner Algometer, whose trainer David Simcock said on Wednesday night: "Kirsten has decided she is very keen to run. I'm desperate to run as well because he's in tremendous order and it's a very open year. He'll also be comfortable on the ground. Jim Crowley will ride.


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Minding heads Oaks field of nine

Wed 1st Jun 2016, 11:01
Minding
Minding
(Healy Racing Photos)
Aidan O'Brien's 1000 Guineas winner Minding heads a field of nine declared for the Investec Oaks at Epsom on Friday.

The filly bids to become the first horse since Kazzia in 2002 to complete the Classic double.

However she goes into the mile and a half showpiece on the back of a defeat in the Irish equivalent when she was beaten into second place by Jet Setting after suffering a minor head injury leaving the stalls.

O'Brien also has Seventh Heaven and Somehow declared but has taken out Even Song and How High The Moon.

There is a fourth Irish challenger in Jim Bolger's Turret Rocks, who was sixth behind Minding at Newmarket.

Skiffle was the only supplementary entry at the confirmation stage and the Goodwood Listed winner takes her chance for Godolphin and trainer Charlie Appleby.

The line-up is completed by Hugo Palmer's Architecture, David Elsworth's Australian Queen, the Ralph Beckett-trained Diamonds Pour Moi and Harlequeen from Mick 




 

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