Aidan O’Brien Lands Classic Double at Newmarket
It may not have been the fancied runners that many expected, and it may not have been number one stable jockey Ryan Moore on top, but Aidan O’Brien once again dominated the early classics of the flat season. The Irish handler landed both the 2000 Guineas on Saturday and the 1000 Guineas on Sunday at Newmarket to complete the double, and prepare us all for a season of dominance once again.
On Saturday it was Magna Grecia who took the 2000 Guineas and while the draw may have been a help to him and a hinderance to others as the way the race worked out, there is no doubting his talent. Straight after the race we were told that he would be sticking to a mile for now, with the Irish Guineas and then a trip to Royal Ascot for the St James’ Palace already pencilled into his schedule. This was an impressive winner, and he may be top class, but there was a doubt over how the race was ran and the draw, so we will need to wait and see him again in a different race before deciding just how good he is.
On the second day, O’Brien landed the 1000 Guineas with Hermosa and she again was a horse that caused a Ballydoyle upset, beating some of her more fancied rivals. While she had a small chance of winning the race, she was there to make the pace for the other runners to a certain extent, but she would not allow anyone past. she was gutsy, and kept pulling out more to keep on top, with a brilliant ride from Wayne Lordan on top. He showed that behind Ryan Moore, Ballydoyle have a number of very good jockeys they can call upon, and although this was down the pecking order, the filly still had a very good jockey on, and she was given a great ride.
Next up for the Aidan O’Brien camp in terms of classics will be back on their home soil, with the Irish equivalent of the 1000 & 2000 Guineas. They will no doubt have a strong team for that, more than likely led by the two Newmarket winners from this weekend and you certainly wouldn’t back against the stable taking home those two trophies to add to the English ones.