CHAMPION trainer Aidan O’Brien will seek a record-equalling seventh Investec Derby success at Epsom on Saturday. Andy Stephens of Racing UK spent a morning with him on the gallops at Ballydoyle.
It is 7.45am on a mild Monday morning at Ballydoyle and Aidan O’Brien is watching first lot go through their paces.
Seventy regally-bred thoroughbreds are exercising in close vicinity in serene surroundings that have been a playground for a dozen Derby winners.
The noise of air being inhaled and exhaled through flared equine nostrils, not to mention 280 limbs flicking over the all-weather gallop, is intoxicating. There are few places on earth any racing enthusiast would rather be.
One horse is out on his own and catches the eye. O’Brien volunteers that it is Saxon Warrior, the odds-on Investec Derby favourite, and the powerfully-built colt is a sight to behold as he powers past under regular work rider Richella Carroll.