Aidan O’Brien is looking forward to further progress from Breeders’ Cup Classic contender Mendelssohn following his big effort to finish third in the Jockey Club Gold Cup at Belmont Park on Saturday night.
The Ballydoyle runner was only beaten two lengths in third place behind Discreet Lover, after helping to set a very strong pace up from with the ultimately disappointing favourite Diversify.
“We’re delighted, over the moon really,” said O’Brien on Sunday.
“He progressed from his last run to Saturday night and we thought he might progress more (from there), so we were delighted.
“There was plenty of pace on – there are no slow-run races over there! In that part of the world, they don’t go slow.
“He seemed to be be fine, he walked out this morning fine, and he’ll be back this evening. Everything seems fine.”
The in-form O’Brien also reflected on an excellent day’s work at Newmarket, where he enjoyed a big-race treble, including Group Ones with Ten Sovereigns in the Middle Park Stakes and Fairyland in the Cheveley Park Stakes.
“We were delighted with them all really. You’d have to be happy with them all,” he said.
“We were very happy with Ten Sovereigns. He did well, because a lot has happened to him in three weeks or a month.
“What you’d like about him is when they challenged him his stride didn’t shorten, it lengthened.
“He wasn’t giving up and that’s a good sign – it’s a good sign if he goes to a mile next year. You usually see with those sprinting horses that they don’t get down the way he did, he didn’t surrender.
“He was green going into the dip and he got a little bit unbalanced, Donnacha (O’Brien) said, but you’d have to be very happy with him. I’d imagine that’s him done for the year.”
He added: “Fairyland might run again. She could go to America (for the Breeders’ Cup). Obviously they all won’t go, but Just Wonderful might go to America for the fillies’ race.”
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