The Coronation Cup and the Oaks may not be the races that Aidan O’Brien may most want to win at Epsom this year, but the trainer can give himself an outstanding chance of completing a Group One sweep with St Nicholas Abbey and Wonder Of Wonders.
O’Brien has Recital and Seville as his leading hopes in the Derby odds, but other Group One contests dominate proceedings on the opening day at Epsom.
First is the Coronation Cup and the five-runner encounter looks a straight shoot-out between St Nicholas Abbey and Midday.
St Nicholas Abbey looked to have rediscovered his classy two-year-old form when winning the Ormonde Stakes on his latest start at Chester and can follow up at Epsom despite stepping back in trip to 1m4f.
Ryan Moore is once again chosen in the saddle, which is a definite positive and it is 5/6 that St Nicholas Abbey can extend O’Brien’s Coronation Cup record to five wins in the last seven years.
Midday may be a prolific Group One winner, but these successes have been secured against other mares and fillies.
It remains to be seen if she is really good enough to mix it with the colts.
Wonder Of Wonders is 3/1 in the Oaks odds and certainly has the pedigree to suggest victory, thanks to her relationship with the likes of All Too Beautiful, Galileo and Sea The Stars.
Meanwhile, she quickened nicely to win the Cheshire Oaks on her latest start and certainly has the scope to make the improvement needed to win at Epsom.
1000 Guineas winner Blue Bunting is likely to pose the biggest threat as not only did he win at Newmarket but should in theory improve for the step up in trip to 1m4f.
Blue Bunting is 2/1 to win the Oaks and complete the Classic double.