O’Briens confident Ruler of the World can best Derby field
‘We have been very happy with him . He impressed us at Epsom and we think the Curragh will suit him even better’
“I was fairly bullish when I came in then that if he met Battle Of Marengo again it would be a different result. It’s the first time I’ve had a proper chance in a Classic.”
Galileo Rock’s trainer David Wachman acknowledges his charge will have to keep improving to again trouble those who finished ahead of him at Epsom.
Wachman said: “He’s in good form and the ground looks OK so far. Hopefully the rain stays away. It’s a competitive race. Hopefully he’s still progressing as if you don’t progress month by month, you get left behind. We’d like a strong pace, but he handled an easy pace all right in Epsom.
“We’ll just have to see what happens.”
Jim Bolger’s only previous Irish Derby success was with St Jovite back in 1992, but he could find the target again with Trading Leather.
Second in the Dante and third in the Irish 2,000 Guineas, the son of Teofilo appeared ready for a step up to a mile and a half when impressing in the Silver Stakes last time out.
Bolger said: “The step up in trip should suit him. He seems in very good form and is looking very well. He’s been eating well since his last run and put the weight back on. He wants good ground or a little faster.”
John Oxx has won the Irish Derby with Sinndar (2000) and Alamshar (2003) and is this year represented by outsider Little White Cloud, who has been placed twice in Pattern company this year.
Oxx said: “The Gallinule was probably quick enough back (after the Derrinstown). He ran well but was beaten again. Both those were over a mile and a quarter and he’s a mile-and-a-half horse and will probably stay beyond that. He’s rated 107 and has to improve 10lb to be competitive. I think he’ll improve a certain amount, but whether he makes that jump I don’t know.
“It’s been five weeks since his last run so he’s had a chance to improve and he’s is bred to improve from two to three also. Hopefully with the time and the extra distance he’ll make the jump, but the gap is obviously there. He wants fast ground. He doesn’t handle soft and wouldn’t even want the slow side of good.”
A nine-runner field is completed by Godolphin pacemaker Cap O’Rushes and Pat Shanahan’s 100-1 outsider Ralston Road.