Betfair Ambassador Joseph O'Brien discusses the chances of his quintet of runners at Royal Ascot on Thursday including one in the Gold Cup...
"We have always felt that a strongly-run mile will suit him well and, while this is obviously a tough ask, we feel he is up to being competitive in it."
Fluent mover can keep on improving
Andreas Vesalius is a lovely colt that has improved with each of his three runs, winning a conditions race at Naas in good style last time. He seems to have improved again since that run and we think this stiff five furlongs will suit him. I think he'll be fine whether the rain arrives or not, as he has won on soft ground and is a fluent mover that should enjoy a sounder surface. We are looking forward to seeing what he can do at this level.
Capable of continuing his good season
Snapraetera has already had a good season, winning a Listed race over seven furlongs at Naas last month. He stays this longer trip and his chance will be enhanced by any rain that arrives. He looks to have improvement to find, but we are hopeful that he'll run a solid race.
Melbourne Cup winner will enjoy trip
Twilight Payment gave us a day to remember when winning the Melbourne Cup last year. His two runs this year have been solid without quite matching his best. We feel he is coming forward all the time and are hopeful that he can run a good race over this longer trip.
Pair can compete in tough race
Grid made it fifth-time lucky when winning a maiden at Cork in impressive style last time. We thought the handicapper might have been a bit harsh by raising him 11lb for that win, but the flip side is that the increase has allowed him to make the cut for this race. We have always felt that a strongly-run mile will suit him well and, while this is obviously a tough ask, we feel he is up to being competitive in it.
Liffey River is another unexposed colt that ran very well on his latest start, finishing second in a seven-furlong handicap at the Curragh. We took a chance running him over that trip, as he'll definitely stay further, but the ground was testing, so we hoped he'd get away with it and he duly did. Stepping back up to this stiff mile will suit and the more rain that arrives, the better his chance.
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