Aidan O’Brien backs Ten Sovereigns to bounce back from York disappointment

Sun 25 Aug 2019

Aidan O’Brien fully expects there to be big days ahead still this season with Ten Sovereigns.

The impressive July Cup winner was sent off favourite for the Coolmore Nunthorpe Stakes at York on Friday, but had to settle for sixth place, on what was his first try at five furlongs.

O’Brien said: “He was in the stalls a long time and just fell asleep. They jumped and they ran and it just kind of caught him a little bit. He wasn’t really prepared for that.

Watch a full replay of the Nunthorpe

“He’ll be fine though, and we think he’ll leave that run behind him.

“It was all new. He was in (the stalls) first, he was asleep in there, and it was a very warm day. Ryan (Moore) felt he just got lethargic and it took him a little bit of time to wake up. You don’t get that time down there on fast ground.

“He’s in all the sprints and we’ll see how he is. We know he’s very comfortable at six and didn’t think five would be a problem.”

O’Brien did have a runner in the frame behind Battaash, with 25-1 chance So Perfect running a big race in third.

The trained added: “She ran very well.”

Meanwhile, Japan continues to figure in the Qipco Irish Champion Stakes picture as O’Brien considers running plans for the Leopardstown showpiece on September 14.

Japan overhauled Crystal Ocean in the closing stages of the International

The Galileo colt finished fourth in the Dante Stakes on what was a delayed seasonal reappearance in May, and has gone from strength to strength since York, taking third in the Derby at Epsom, before going on to score at Royal Ascot and ParisLongchamp.

His crowning moment though, came back at York on Wednesday, with a tenacious victory over Crystal Ocean in the Juddmonte International on the opening day of the Ebor Festival.

Japan answered every call for Ryan Moore at York
Japan answered every call for Ryan Moore at York

O’Brien said: “He came out of it very well. He hasn’t done much, but seems to be in good form. We’re happy with him.

“Obviously the Irish Champion is there for us to look at with all the horses and we’ll see how they are after a week or 10 days, discuss it with the boys and see what they want to do.”

O’Brien also has Magical in the Irish Champion mix, after her run behind Enable in the Darley Yorkshire Oaks.

Magical (left) again had to settle for second to Enable, this time in the Yorkshire Oaks
Magical (left) again had to settle for second to Enable, this time in the Yorkshire Oaks

It was the fourth time O’Brien’s filly had crossed swords with the John Gosden-trained superstar.

The Ballydoyle trainer said: “We were delighted with the run. She just got trapped behind William Buick’s filly (Lah Ti Dar) and obviously when you give Enable first run, and a length, there is no way back.

“It was her first run back (since finishing second to Enable in the Eclipse) and she probably got a bit tired. The plan was to go there and then come back for the Irish Champion.”

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