Leading flat trainer Aidan O'Brien has been preparing an A-List team of runners to send over to America next month for the Breeders Cup meeting and one of his leading chances looks to be Mogul in the Breeders’ Cup Turf.
The going at Keeneland is expected to be good, quick ground and that will play to the strengths of Mogul who was last seen landing the Grand Prix de Paris in those conditions and his handler believes that missing the Arc could benefit him going into this event.
(Credit ATR) “He’s a big, gross, powerful horse, who takes his racing well and is always very happy to race. We were looking forward to the Arc with him.
“We’re happy with what he’s doing at home at the moment.”
Magical is another big chance for O'Brien across the two days and after having another superb season which has seen her land three Group Ones to her roster.
Although she could not manage to land back to back renewals in the Champion Stakes at Ascot, she still finished a remarkable third in tough conditions and has a huge chance of picking up her eight black type event of her career.
“We’ve been delighted with her this year. She ran well the last day. The ground was very heavy in Ascot. She seems to have come out of the race very well,” he said.
“She did very well over the winter from four to five physically and we were looking forward to seeing her race this year. When she started racing, we thought she had improved again.
“She’s a fine, big mare and has been racing at the top level at two, three and four. I suppose we were delighted and hoping the improvement would be there.
“It’s possible this will be her last race, but I don’t know. She also has an entry in Hong Kong in December, so I suppose we will see how things go.
“What we usually do is we take them home and have a good chat about it 10 days after the race and see what we want to do.”
Circus Maximus will be looking to go better than his fourth in the Breeders’ Cup Mile last season and if getting back to his form which saw him land the Queen Anne Stakes at Royal Ascot, he has a huge chance.
“He’s been in good form since the last day. The ground in Ascot was very bad and it didn’t suit him,” said the Ballydoyle handler.
“He likes a nice surface and an even pace, a flat track and he loves to get into a battle. We think all those things might suit him.”
A frustrating horse for O'Brien this term has been Lope Y Fernandez who has been tried at a mile all the way down to six furlongs and his trainer is hoping this race will be able to show his true potential.
“We think six, maybe seven is his ideal trip. We had a race in France on Arc day, a seven-furlong Group One (the Prix de la Foret) in mind for him and he didn’t get to run,” he said.
“We thought it would set him up for this race, so when we couldn’t run there, we ran him over six at Ascot and the ground was bad, but he ran respectably and we all thought the Breeders’ Cup Mile might suit him on a flat, easy track.
“We think it will suit him and will ride him a little bit patiently.
“Ryan (Moore) will have the choice and at the moment Circus Maximus is the highest-rated, but we’ll wait and see.”
The Ballydoyle handler's superstar two year old Battleground is entered in the Breeders’ Cup Juvenile Turf and after winning at both Royal Ascot and Glorious Goodwood he has been waited on patiently for this meeting.
“He’s a fine, big powerful colt. He’s usually a good traveller, likes nice ground. He started early in the year, won at Royal Ascot and then he went and won at Goodwood,” he said.
“He was being prepared for the National Stakes and he coughed getting off the box, so we withdrew him and then we prepared him for the Dewhurst and with the ground the way it was, we said we’d wait.
“He has been in full training a long time and was prepared for two races in between he didn’t run in, so we think his fitness levels are good and high and he seems to be in good form.”
(Credit At The Races)