Aidan O’Brien is a four time winner of this race, most recently in 2018 with Idaho, and is represented by sole runner Japan at the head of affairs who runs on the back of a six month layoff.
Japan was tipped for a huge four-year-old season in 2020, however things didn’t quite pan out as expected with a fourth placed finish in the Prince of Wales stakes (Group 1, 10f) on his reappearance despite going off as 6/4 favourite.
He then followed up with a third placed effort behind Ghaiyyath and Enable in the Coral Eclipse (Group One, 10f) before subsequently being soundly beaten in his three following runs, all in Group One affairs.
He re-appears here, taking a drop in class to a Group Three contest and is upped in trip to the 13f distance which looks sure to suit given the demand for stamina over pace.
Aidan O’Brien has already stated that preparations for his five-year-old season have been much better than last years and the horse looks to have grown into himself over the winter.
He’s a classy type and that puts him above the rest here, although, as expected, he will still have some doubters to prove wrong as he looks to get back on track.
Ryan Moore is employed on board who has won this race four times, twice of those wins coming under Aidan O’Brien.