Investec Derby 2017: Ryan Moore ponders mount as O’Brien fields seven runners


Aidan O’Brien and jockey Joseph O’Brien after winning the Derby with Australia.

Horse Talk with Simon Jackson: Top horse racing tips and the latest news.

AIDAN O’BRIEN is set to be represented by seven runners in the Investec Derby on June 3 as he bids to win the Epsom Classic for the sixth time.

The Irish maestro’s five victories include a remarkable hat-trick of wins in the World’s most important horse race when scoring with Camelot (2012), Ruler of the World (2013) and Australia (2014).

The unique treble followed wins with super-stallion Galileo (2001) and High Chaparral (2002) and the multiple Irish champion trainer is set to saddle his largest number of entries in the Epsom Classic since fielding eight runners in 2007.

The entries are headed by the Chester Dee Stakes winner Cliffs Of Moher; but O’Brien admitted, when interviewed by telephone at Breakfast with the Stars at Epsom on Tuesday, that stable jockey Ryan Moore has yet to make a decision on which of the seven he will ride.

“Ryan will get all the information, talk to everybody and then make his decision,” O’Brien said. “I wouldn’t think it’s a foregone conclusion [to ride Cliffs Of Moher] by any means but it is very possible.

“Before Chester we weren’t even sure he’d get a mile and a quarter. He’s out of a very fast mare and he won his maiden over seven furlongs, really dominating the pace. We were very happy with him at Chester – he relaxed and he went to the line very strong.

“We think he is going to improve and he has done a couple of pieces (of work) and we are very happy with that.”

O’Brien is similarly happy with his other runners, Douglas Macarthur and Capri, who finished first and third in the Group 3 Derrinstown Derby Trial at Leopardstown and Venice Beach, Wings Of Eagles and The Anvil, the first three home in the Group 3 Chester Vase.

“Everything is going well with all the horses and there is a good chance, after the lads (Coolmore partners) have discussed everything, they will run.

“The Derrinstown [runners’] preparations have gone very well and they all improved for their first run of the year. They should go forward again.

“The three horses in the Vase are solid mile and a half horses and could get further. The next 10 days is going to be very interesting. All the horses so far have done nothing but please us.

“They are on their own separate programmes.  Some horses take a lot of work, some very little and some take no work.

“Douglas Macarthur is a horse we have always felt will stay further than a mile and a quarter, Capri will improve going a mile and a half.

“Venice Beach will stay really well, The Anvil the same and Wings Of Eagles,” added O’Brien who will now also run the Group 3 placed Finn McCool.

Horse Talk with Simon Jackson. Showcasing horse racing in London and the south east.