Bomb primed to make explosion
O'Brien's unbeaten colt ready for seasonal debut with return to level on cards for Cyclone
Aidan O'Brien's unbeaten colt Hit It A Bomb may go to Newbury on Saturday to make his seasonal debut after he was left in amongst a list of 16 for the Group Two Hungerford Stakes.
The Breeders' Cup Juvenile Turf winner of last season has not run since bringing up his hat-trick of wins at Keeneland back in October, but signs are that a return is very close for the son of War Front who had held an entry for Irish Oaks weekend at the Curragh and is also currently engaged in the Group Three Desmond Stakes at Leopardstown on Thursday evening.
Bookmakers BoyleSports have installed Hugo Palmer's Home Of The Brave as the 7/2 joint favourite for the seven-furlong contest alongside Nemoralia, with Hit It A Bomb priced up at 11/2 but a best priced 8/1 with Betfair and Paddy Power.
O'Brien has also left in Cougar Mountain, The Happy Prince and Air Vice Marshall for the feature race of the weekend.
Meanwhile, trainer Shark Hanlon is looking towards a big prize in October for his stable star, Hidden Cyclone.
Despite his recent effort when finishing second in the Galway Hurdle, Hanlon is thinking of returning to the Flat with the 11-year-old.
Hidden Cyclone has been a terrific servant for connections, just falling short in Grade One company when finishing second on three occasions at the top level, including in the Ryanair Chase at the Cheltenham Festival, but Hanlon is keen to take aim at a decent pot on the Flat.
Hidden Cyclone is unbeaten in just two outings on the level but Killarney at the end of the month is being targeted by the trainer with an eye on bigger and better things.
"We've nothing solid planned for him, but we're thinking we might run in a winners-of-two Flat race at Killarney at the end of the month," said the Carlow trainer.
"He needs to have that third run on the Flat before he gets a mark in England and we're thinking we might aim him at the Cesarewitch at Newmarket, but that's just an idea."
Hanlon had to endure another near miss with his stable star as he went down to Clondaw Warrior last month in Ireland's most valuable jump race but he's come out of Galway well.
"He's in super form and we're very happy with him. We came home from the Galway Hurdle thrilled and disappointed. He ran a fantastic race, Danny (Mullins) gave him a great ride, but we were disappointed to get beat.
"He's been a brilliant servant to us, but he's finished second in a Galway Hurdle, second in a Ryanair Chase and he's been second in a load of other Grade Ones - he just can't seem to get his head in front."
Hanlon added:"He might not be good enough (for the Cesarewitch), but we'll see. We'll take him to Killarney, all going well, see how he gets on there and then make a plan."
There was also a positive update on Don Cossack from trainer Gordon Elliott yesterday with the Gold Cup winner expected to be back in training this month.
A tendon injury ruled Don Cossack out of the Punchestown Festival back in April but it is a case of so far, so good for the nine-year-old, although his trainer is adamant that he'll only run again if "he stays 110 per cent."
Elliott said; "He scanned OK a few weeks ago. I think he could be back training within a month, then he'll start on roadwork. He'll probably do eight weeks of that, get re-scanned and if everything is OK, we'll start back with him then."