Aidan O’Brien faces tough British challenge in search of 13th win in 2000 Irish Guineas

Richard Hannon Jnr sends Rosallion and Haatem to the Curragh as he attempts to follow in the footsteps of his father and namesake, following their trio of successes in the Irish Guineas (Don’t Forget Me in 1987, Tirol in 1990 and Canford Cliffs in 2010 ). .

Hannon reports that favorite Rosallion (Sean Levey’s mount), second in his last start in the 2000 English Guineas, and Newmarket, third Haatem (Jamie Spencer), are in poor health.

“They did a job on Sunday morning and Rosallion traveled like a genius,” Hannon said of the 11/10 market leader. “Haatem did what he normally does. He is very relaxed and it just shows the well-being of him.”

However, they will have to overcome O’Brien’s sextet, after the field for the €500,000 masterpiece was narrowed to 11 with River Tiber and Unquestionable set to lead their team.

River Tiber was last seen running third in the Group One Middle Park Stakes at Newmarket in late September, but the son of Wootton Bassett is ready to take off in the Irish Classic.

“Everything has gone well with him. Obviously we were trying to split them all up and start different races. He was in Navan the other day and everything is fine,” O’Brien said.

“We believe a mile is within range, although it is not guaranteed. We just thought we’d start in Guinea and if I didn’t make it I’d go back to the Commonwealth (Cup, at Royal Ascot over six furlongs) or something like that. “He doesn’t lack speed.”

Unquestionable may not be as mature as his stablemate, who suffered “a little problem a couple of weeks ago” and the Breeders’ Cup Juvenile Turf hero could see better results at Royal Ascot, according to his trainer.

“He may not be as much of a forward at River Tiber but the plan is to start him at the Curragh with a view to going to Ascot after that,” he said.

“He had a little problem a couple of weeks ago but he’s back in full swing, but he had it so he could improve a little bit more at the Curragh than he did at the River Tiber.”

Henry Longfellow is also entered but is unlikely to feature after his recent disappointment in losing the favorite in the French Guineas, while the impressive first Leopardstown winner Igor Stravinsky. Mountain Bear and The Liffey could also appear for him.

Tetrarch Stakes winner Bright Stripes is a rare Classic runner for Andrew Oliver, while Atlantic Coast and Take Me To Church could also take the opportunity to command big prices for Joseph O’Brien and Jack Davison respectively.

Related Articles

Back to top button