Japan Racing Association Tyros Stakes (Group 3) | 7f | 2yo | RTV
It's about time we found out whether our eyes were deceiving us at Leopardstown last month.
Maidens at Leopardstown are not easily won, so for any newcomer to do it by nine lengths is remarkable. To add to the visual impression, the runner-up returned to the track next time to win a maiden in emphatic style.
It all points to Cadillac being a bit special, but he might need to be to win what looks a terrific Tyros.
All the dogs on the streets of County Meath were barking about Masen before his debut last month, and he was backed into 4-5 to make a winning start to his career.
He did just that, but had to work hard to fend off the late surge of the 66-1 John Murphy-trained newcomer Charterhouse. They renew rivalry.
Ger Lyons was adamant in his post-race quotes that there would be lots of improvement to come from Masen, so it will be fascinating to find out just how good he is.
Aidan O’Brien has sent out the winner for the last six years, but he looks to have a weaker hand than normal and the once-raced Van Gogh appears to be his first string on jockey bookings with Wayne Lordan riding.
He was only fourth to Masen in a course-and-distance maiden last month, but we all know how much O’Brien juveniles can improve from first to second start, so he could paint quite a pretty picture this time.
That said, he does need to find big improvement to continue his trainer’s remarkable record in the race.
Aidan’s son Donnacha runs Gowran Park maiden winner Southern Cape and the form of that maiden has worked out well, the runner-up winning impressively at Galway last month.
The race revolves around Cadillac, though. If he’s as good as he looked first time out, he will take some stopping. Ignore Masen at your peril. My instincts tell me he is very smart indeed.
What they say
Jessica Harrington, trainer of Cadillac
We knew he was all right before he ran at Leopardstown, but I suppose none of us thought he'd go out and do what he did. We hadn’t really taken him off the bridle at home before he went there. He’s been in good form since and I’m very happy with him.
Aidan O’Brien, trainer of Military Style, Swiss Ace and Van Gogh
Van Gogh had a nice run the first day at Leopardstown and we have just let him progress since then. He’s done very well. Military Style won his maiden at Naas and went close at Cork last time. He’s been doing everything well. Swiss Ace won well first time out at Tipperary and went over to Newmarket for a Group 2 afterwards. We’ve been happy with him at home and he steps up in trip here.
Donnacha O’Brien, trainer of Southern Cape
He was just touched off in a maiden over course and distance and then went on and won his maiden at Gowran. The form of that has worked out well with the second winning at Galway.
Joseph O’Brien, trainer of State Of Rest and Vafortino
State Of Rest was just touched off over this course and distance last time and seems in good form. The form of Vafortino’s maiden looks good now with the runner-up winning last time and this has been the plan since. He obviously likes the track.