SAXON Warrior was an authoritative and exciting winner of the 2,000 Guineas at Newmarket on Saturday, raising the possibility of his connections landing the Triple Crown they were cruelly denied with Camelot six years ago.
Trainer Aidan O’Brien clearly has another hugely talented horse in his stable, though it is much more newsworthy that there is a horse of comparable quality in the Berkshire yard of Roger Teal, whose Tip Two Win put in a mighty effort to be second at 50-1.
O’Brien, whose extraordinary tally of Group One wins has now reached 300, was away in the United States, preparing Mendelssohn for Saturday night’s Kentucky Derby. This victory will have meant much more to him than most of the others, as it provided a first Classic success for his youngest son, Donnacha, the winning jockey.
Aged 19, Donnacha was born the month after his father won this race for the first time, with King Of Kings in 1998. He was given a detailed breakdown of how to ride this tricky straight mile by his brother, Joseph, who bagged his own 2,000 aboard Camelot.
“If I hadn’t won a Guineas, I’d probably be the disappointment of the family,” said Donnacha, who has evidently inherited his father’s facility for self-deprecation. Of his family connection, he added: “I’m under no illusions that’s the only reason I’m riding them but I’m glad I can do the business. I’m very lucky to be sitting on some of these horses. I didn’t mess up on him anyway.” – The Guardian.