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Sunday, 09 December, 2018

Unbeaten Ten Sovereigns sparkles to make it a day to remember for Ballydoyle

Ten Sovereigns (purple) lands the Middle Park Stakes from Jash
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Strains of The Wild Rover were no doubt echoing around pubs in Ireland as Ten Sovereigns maintained his unbeaten record in the Group 1 Juddmonte Middle Park Stakes, with Aidan O'Brien dominating on the Rowley Mile.

A stuttering summer caused by illness in the yard has turned into a bountiful autumn, with O'Brien harvesting four of the five juvenile Group races on offer at Newmarket's Cambridgeshire meeting, and this victory completed a juvenile big-race treble in the first three contests on Saturday.

The rise to the top has been a rapid one for Ten Sovereigns, who made his racecourse debut just over a month ago. In a 36-day period the colt has notched three victories, his latest a half-length defeat of Jash under Donnacha O'Brien, who was completing a treble on the card.

"He's a very fast horse with a lot of speed," O'Brien said.

That speed comes from sire No Nay Never, a son of the late Scat Daddy, who was quickly identified by Coolmore as an influential stallion, and O'Brien was quick to point out the significance of the victory.

"It's exciting for the lads because they have all the stamina in the Galileo mares and now they have Justify and No Nay Never and Scat Daddy's speed," O'Brien added. "That was the exciting thing about today, that he came up to Group 1 standard as you don't really know until you run them."

Ten Sovereigns certainly passed the Group 1 litmus test, as he travelled powerfully under O'Brien before coming to the front with over a furlong left to run. He was joined by Jash and the pair pulled clear of the field in the manner of two smart performers.

Replay, result and analysis

"Donnacha gave him a super ride," Aidan O'Brien added. "He said it was the first time he'd felt green. He's very exciting, he had to tough it out at the end."

It might be the last time racegoers see Ten Sovereigns this year, with O'Brien of the opinion that the colt has done a lot in a short period of time, although he is entered for the Darley Dewhurst Stakes back at the course next month.

"He's not long out since he started and we rushed two runs in together," the trainer said. "He just about made this one back and I think to be fair to him the best thing would be to leave him alone."

Ten Sovereigns was trimmed to 6-1 in places for the Qipco 2,000 Guineas, while he heads the market at a general 5-1 for next season's Commonwealth Cup.

Given the speed he has shown, sticking to sprint trips looks the more obvious route and, when asked about next year, O'Brien said: "He probably won't get much further than a mile, if he gets a mile."

For runner-up Jash a Guineas trial awaits next season, as Angus Gold, racing manager to owner Hamdan Al Maktoum, said: "We're really impressed with that and as he doesn't look like a six-furlong horse we'll put him away and go over seven next season starting in something like the Greenham.

"The winner is obviously highly talented and if you'd offered to finish half a length second to him before the race I would have taken it."

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Donnacha gave him a super ride. He said it was the first time he'd felt green. He's very exciting, he had to tough it out at the end
E.W. Terms
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