O'Brien mulling juvenile targets
Last Updated: 04/09/14 10:46am
Aidan O'Brien believes that Dick Whittington's victory in the Phoenix Stakes offered plenty of encouragement that he will stay further than six furlongs.
In his six runs to date, he has only tackled one race in excess of six furlongs when he finished third to Richard Pankhurst in the Chesham at Royal Ascot.
O'Brien feels he had a viable excuse that day, though, and he may be tempted by his entry in the Dubai Dewhurst Stakes over seven furlongs than the more than the Vision.ae Middle Park Stakes over six.
"Obviously he's had a few quickish runs so we gave him a little break after that (Phoenix) but we're very happy with him." O'Brien told At The Races.
"He's a horse with a lot of speed who travels very strongly but we were very happy the last day as it looked like he'd get further than six.
"We ran him over seven at Ascot but he was drawn badly in the middle of the track, so we were a bit worried that he wasn't going to get seven or a mile, but you'd imagine looking at him the last day that he probably will. He's a horse with a lot of speed."
O'Brien's string suffered health-wise early in the season which meant his juveniles were slower than usual coming to hand but he has unleashed some very promising types over the last few weeks.
"Our horses were sick in the spring and when the older horses got over it the two-year-olds got it, it just slowed up everything," he said.
"It looks like there's some nice horses arriving now.
"I was very happy with Highland Reel at Goodwood and I'm obviously very happy with Gleneagles. He quickened very well the last day - that's what you like when they travel well and quicken well.
"They are all in the National Stakes and it's very possible Gleneagles might go back for that if everything is well with him.
"I was delighted with Ol' Man River at the Curragh and John F Kennedy might go to Leopardstown for the race that Australia won on Champions Day (Breeders' Cup Juvenile Turf Trial). We look forward to seeing him run again and he seems to be in good form since.
"We find out on the track like everyone else. Obviously Gleneagles has a lot of speed so he might be a Guineas-type horse rather than a Derby horse. A John F Kennedy might get the Derby trip."