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O'Brien: No prep run for Ten Sovereigns

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Aidan O’Brien looking happy at his Coolmore operation yesterday

Aidan O’Brien looking happy at his Coolmore operation yesterday

Racing Post

Aidan O’Brien looking happy at his Coolmore operation yesterday

Buoyed by a good afternoon at Leopardstown last Saturday, Aidan O'Brien is looking forward to another new season at the helm of the most powerful racing stable in the world.

Cutting an extremely relaxed and content figure yesterday in Ballydoyle, O'Brien confirmed that 2,000 Guineas hope Ten Sovereigns would go straight to Newmarket, while recent Navan winner Sergei Prokofiev is likely to be dropped back to five furlongs and is "probably as fast a horse as we've ever had", according to O'Brien.

"Ten Sovereigns physically has done well," O'Brien confirmed of the unbeaten Classic contender. "At the moment, everything looks like he would get a mile. He is a very relaxed horse."

O'Brien opted to skip a tilt at the Greenham Stakes this weekend where Too Darn Hot is expected to start for John Gosden and, indeed, has no entries for the race at all.

The trainer also spoke about his tendency to leave his horses with room for improvement from their first outing of the season.

"The first weekend in May is the time we usually hope to have them in good order. Other than that, we start and see where we are and make little tweaks along the way. At that stage, even a day or so can make a huge difference.

"I'd rather start that way than start very high, because you can keep tweaking things and if you can keep doing that, you might keep stepping up. The smallest little thing can make the biggest difference."

While O'Brien is skipping Newbury at the weekend he is expected to have his first runner at Chelmsford on Thursday with USS Michigan going for a Kentucky Derby Trial there.

"If we are to have a runner in the race this year, he'd be the only one suitable," O'Brien said of the Kentucky Derby.

Of his Derby contenders, Chester remains a popular hunting ground and their trials next month are on the agenda again.