Aidan O’Brien on brink of new record Series haul
19 Sep 2017
The champion trainer needs one more winner this year to secure record tally
O’Brien has again been the centre of attention this summer. Picture: Racingfotos.com
Aidan O’Brien requires one more QIPCO British Champions Series winner this year to achieve a record haul.
The victory of Capri in the William Hill St Leger at Doncaster on Saturday means he has achieved 10 triumphs in this year’s Series – the same as he managed last year. His previous tallies have been 4, 7, 5, 4 and 3.
O’Brien has six more chances to raise the bar higher and must be a very short price to secure a record amount of prize money. Twelve months ago he secured £5,648,937 in the Series and this term he already has £5,153,693 with the £4.3 million QIPCO British Champions Day at Ascot on October 21 still to come.
Here are the champion trainer’s best hopes for the remaining races:
O’Brien won the Newmarket contest with Alice Springs last year and she features among seven entries he has made this time. Winter stands out among his team but she has other options. Roly Poly, winner of the Tattersalls Falmouth Stakes at Newmarket in July, and Rhododendron, runner-up in the QIPCO 1000 Guineas and Investec Oaks, could also represent him.
O’Brien has an entry of 11 to shuffle, including 2015 Gold Cup winner Order Of St George among them. He finished fourth in last year’s renewal after finishing third in the Arc and may again head to France before Champions Day.
Caravaggio is on course to try and gain a second Series success, having won the Commonwealth Cup at Royal Ascot in June. He beat Harry Angel that day and their third clash (Harry Angel had Caravaggio back in fourth when landing the Darley July Cup) is eagerly awaited.
O’Brien has made seven entries with four of them – Winter, Rhododendron, Seventh Heaven and Hydrangea – having won at least Group One race. It is unclear which will be on duty.
Churchill and Winter, who between them this season have won four Classics, head 11 entries for the master of Ballydoyle. Alice Springs and Roly Poly, who are also Series winners, are also engaged.
O’Brien has indicated that Churchill, winner of the QIPCO 2000 Guineas and Irish version, is an intended runner. His 14 other possibles include the outstanding pair of Highland Reel and Winter.
Tickets are selling fast to racing’s big finale, with King Edward VII Enclosure already sold out, so be sure to secure your spot now to Ascot next month.