Aidan O’Brien anticipating further progress from QEII second I Can Fly

    Trainer believes Ascot runner-up can step up again in 2019
  • Sunday 21 October 2018
  • News

Aidan O’Brien feels there should be more to come from I Can Fly next season after she pushed Roaring Lion close in the Queen Elizabeth II Stakes at Ascot on Saturday.

The filly went down by only a neck and is now Group One placed to add to her Group Two win in the Boomerang Stakes.

“We thought she was a Guineas filly. She just lost her way in the middle but has been progressing with every run since, massive progressive as we saw, and there could still be even more to come next year,” said O’Brien.

“She’s a smart filly.”

O’Brien was able to give a clean bill of health to all his Champions Day runners, but no decision will be rushed over which horses now head to the Breeders’ Cup.

“They all seem to be fine. We’ll see how they are next week and then we’ll have a chat and see what will go on to America or what will be retired,” he said.

“Obviously some of those fillies will be left alone now.

“Rhododendron (fifth in Champion Stakes) might be left alone now as she’s after doing a lot. The lads will talk about it now, but she’s a very important mare and she’s done it at two and three.

“She’s a filly that, looking back at it, a mile could have been her best trip, even though she has a lot of good form over a mile and a quarter. She still ran well yesterday.

“Capri (fourth) is grand. He ran a good, solid race.”

Sir Erec finished just ahead of Irish Leger winner Flag Of Honour in the Long Distance Cup behind Stradivarius.

“The stayers’ race was a little bit messy, but they ran good races. They are both horses that will get trips as four-year-olds,” said O’Brien.

“They’ll get a mile and a half plus anyway. They’ll be comfortable at a mile and a half, but they’d go on from there I’d imagine.”

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