O'Brien dominates Beresford entries in bid for eight in a row
Aidan O'Brien is making an all-out assault on Sunday's lucrative Naas card where the €400,000 prize fund is headed by the Group Two Beresford Stakes, a race in which the Ballydoyle maestro is bidding for an eighth successive triumph and an astonishing 18th in total.
Having taken the prize with future champions like St Nicholas Abbey (2009), Capri (2016) and Saxon Warrior (2017), O'Brien has a typically strong hand with half of the remaining 16 entries in a race which the great Sea The Stars won for John Oxx ten years ago.
Galway maiden winner Sovereign and last month's Curragh maiden winner Mount Everest are his likeliest candidates and he expects the latter to continue improving on his fourth career run.
"Mount Everest has progressed nicely with racing and we've been very happy with him since the Curragh. He won nicely the last day and is a colt that looks very comfortable over a mile," O'Brien said.
Dermot Weld bids to bridge a 33-year gap with the hat-trick-seeking Zuenoon, while Michael O'Callaghan's course and distance winner Power Of Now and I Am Superman lead the opposition along with the Ger Lyons pair of Galway Festival scorer Zander and debut winner Pythion.
Fresh from finishing fifth in Prague last Saturday, Tom Hogan targets the Group Three Renaissance Stakes with the globe-trotting Gordon Lord Byron, while Weld's unbeaten three-year-old Falcon Eight takes in the Group Three Loughbrown Stakes where O'Brien's Idaho is also entered.
O'Brien said of the Irish St Leger fifth: "Idaho is in good shape and we are happy with him. Idaho likes to go the extra trip now and the Irish St Leger might not have been run to suit him so it's very possible he'll step back up to two miles for that."
Elsewhere, jockey Tom Eaves faces a significant spell on the sidelines after suffering a triple leg break in a nasty fall at Newcastle on Monday.