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Friday 24 November 2017

Williams: Aidan is the world’s best, he is remarkable

Aidan O'Brien
Aidan O'Brien

Nick Williams, son of Australia's biggest racehorse owner, Lloyd, yesterday hailed Aidan O'Brien as a "remarkable" trainer.

"I think Aidan is doing all right for such a young trainer!" Williams quipped. "His achievements are out of this world and if you think about it, if Aidan trains until he is 70, or even until he is 65, he'll probably train 600 or 700 Group One winners. It is just extraordinary. It is a credit to him, Ann Marie and their whole family, they are an incredible operation."

Williams was speaking to The Herald after watching O'Brien's Johannes Vermeer and the Joseph O'Brien-trained duo of Rekindling and US Army Ranger at Werribee Racecourse yesterday.

Lloyd Williams has won the Emirates Melbourne Cup a record five times and owns a share in the aforementioned trio and suggested that Joseph was "a chip off the old block".

"Joseph gets here on Monday to put the polish on but I think the team are very happy with both Rekindling and US Army Ranger," Williams commented. "There is no doubt that Joseph will be one of the leading trainers in the world. What he has done in his first two seasons training is extraordinary. He really is a chip off the old block."

Williams could own seven of the 24 runners in Tuesday's Emirates Melbourne Cup and son Nick admitted he couldn't be happier with their Irish-trained trio.

Being a three-year-old, Rekindling faces a tough task but certainly impressed with his work on Wednesday morning. "I think if you have the right three-year-old, which he looks to be to me, I think it is a great race for them," Williams told the Herald. "His Irish and English form looks terrific to me, he has beaten the older horses and he ran very well in the English St Leger and we are hopeful.

"If US Army Ranger came back to his best he would look very well handicapped. Joseph has been working hard to keep him happy and he looks to be very happy and well here. Aidan and his team are happy with Johannes Vermeer, I don't think they could be happier with him."

Of the dangers outside of the seven they are directly involved in, Nick Williams was adamant the biggest danger is trained by Willie Mullins.

He said: "Max Dynamite ran second here two years ago and I think it looks like it is in great form to me and Willie is a great trainer."

Reflecting on Aidan O'Brien's recent achievements, Williams concluded; "Obviously John Magnier has given them the chance and the bloodstock to work with but that doesn't ensure it happens as we see there are plenty of other operations that get good horses but don't get the results that Aidan does. It's a remarkable achievement and he is far and away the world's best."

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