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Hannon Jr bullish on Toronado

30 Apr 2013

Richard Hannon Jr talked up the chances of Toronado in the QIPCO 2000 Guineas today, while Aidan O'Brien confirmed that he is likely to be three-handed in the race he has won six times, including with Camelot last year.

Toronado wins the Novae Bloodstock Insurance Craven Stakes on the Rowley Mile 12 days ago. Image courtesy of

Richard Hannon Jr was bullish about the chances of his stable’s main QIPCO 2000 Guineas hope when speaking via a phone link at this afternoon’s QIPCO Guineas Festival Preview Lunch on Newmarket’s Rowley Mile.

"He did a superb piece of work on Sunday and just cantered this morning. He’s in fantastic form, probably the form of his life,” said Hannon.

"I’m confident he’ll run a very good race and it’s between him and Dawn Approach, I think. Hopefully he’ll win.”

On his other runner, Van Der Neer, who is likely to be the mount of William Buick, Hannon said: "He doesn’t have the same amount of dash as Toronado, but he will see out the mile really well. His preparation has been good and he looks very well.”

Aidan O’Brien, meanwhile, confirmed that he is likely to be three-handed on Saturday with Cristoforo Colombo, George Vancouver and Mars. His fourth entry, Lines Of Battle, will be heading for the Kentucky Derby.

On Mars, O’Brien said: "He has obviously only had one run and he is obviously still a baby, but we’ve been happy with him all winter and we think the experience will do him good. He’s a very well balanced, good moving horse.

"They are three good colts. Obviously we wouldn’t be sending all three if we didn’t think all three had chances. We’ve been happy with all three all winter.

"George Vancouver is a Group One winner already and he loves fast ground. Cristoforo Colombo, we’re very happy with him as well. He was unlucky not to win a Group 1 in Ireland. He wants fast ground as well.”

The QIPCO 2000 Guineas will take place at Newmarket this Saturday and the showdown between Dawn Approach and Toronado promises to be a corker. Make sure you go racing or tune in on Channel 4 for the race which is due off at 3.50pm.