City Of Troy (Justify) Wins Gr 1 Coral Eclipse

Breeders Cup Dream Alive As City Of Troy Completes Eclipse Derby Double

City Of Troy (3c Justify – Together Forever, by Galileo) emulated the likes of Golden Horn, Mill Reef, Sea The Stars and Nashwan when following up his Epsom Derby victory with success in the Coral-Eclipse at Sandown on Saturday.

Racing over ten furlongs for the first time and with the ground described as soft, Aidan O’Brien’s star was sent off favourite under Ryan Moore following his breathtaking Classic win. The son of Justify showed a clear dislike for the rain-softened conditions, but went on to deny Group 1 winning juvenile Al Riffa (Wootton Bassett) by a length.

“I got it wrong,” Moore said after the race. “I took him up the middle and then he wanted to go back to the fence. I never really got it out of him until I really had to. There's a lot more in there. Really I wasn't happy, but he found enough to get it done.”

O’Brien added, “We were very worried about the ground. it was a lot softer than it was in the Dewhurst or anything else. in all fairness to the lads,15 years ago they wouldn't have run and would have pulled him out, and I knew that. He's a beautiful, good-ground horse and has obviously won in spite of the ground.”

John Magnier echoed O’Brien’s thoughts, saying, “It's a hard race to win. I remember when Giant's Causeway won by a head in 2000. It wasn't ideal today, but two of the horses were taken out due to the ground and in the old days with a horse like him, we'd have been wondering whether to run him.”

On future plans, O’Brien commented, “I'd imagine the lads will look at the Juddmonte International or the Irish Champion Stakes, and then after that maybe look at America. I'd imagine he could finish off in the Breeders' Cup Classic.”

On the prospect of winning the Breeders’ Cup Classic, Magnier told ITV, “It would be a dream. We've tried it a lot and been beaten many times, including with Galileo, and we hit the crossbar with Declaration Of War and Giant's Causeway. We enjoy trying to do something out of the ordinary, and while there's life in us, we'll keep trying.”

“The dream is to have a horse who can act in the US and here, but it's hard to get that type of horse. At the moment, Justify is delivering on both sides and we're lucky with him, which gives you some hope that City Of Troy is worth trying, and if not him, we'll target the race with something else.”

A Coolmore homebred, City Of Troy has won five of his six career starts, his first Group 1 win coming in the Dewhurst Stakes. The son of Justify is one of four Group performers from four runners out of Group 1 Fillies’ Mile heroine Together Forever (Galileo).