I Am Superman bids for a quickfire hat-trick in the Coolmore Churchill Irish EBF Tetrarch Stakes at the Curragh.
Michael O’Callaghan’s three-year-old failed to open his account in three outings as a juvenile, but he did show promise.
He began this season in a handicap at Leopardstown off a mark of 79, winning well, and then he defied a massive 10lb hike in even easier fashion.
The son of Footstepsinthesand faces nine rivals in Monday’s Listed race, which was won by Awtaad in 2016 before he went on to Irish Guineas glory on his next outing.
“He’s a horse we thought quite a bit of last year, but he has plenty of size and was a bit raw,” said O’Callaghan.
“He was second first time out at the Curragh – and after that, he went a bit weak, and I probably shouldn’t have run him again. But he’s thrived over the winter.
“We thought he’d trained on from his first start – and he was very impressive at Leopardstown, and he was more impressive at Naas against a field of high class handicappers, making them look ordinary.”
I Am Superman is evidently on the up, but still needs to raise his game again.
O’Callaghan added: “You’d have to be quite excited – he’s an improver, but he’s still a few pounds wrong with Aidan’s horse Antilles, but I still think he can progress into Stakes company.
“I still think we haven’t seen the best of him yet, because he had a bit of a blow after Naas. He’s thriving on his racing, so I think he’ll improve again.
“He got an entry in the Irish Guineas, because we always thought a bit of him, but that is still a long way away. He needs to go and step forward again from his last run.
“I’d rather have had another week. But he only lost four kilos at Naas, so he didn’t have a hard race, and it should bring him on quite a bit. We’re pretty hopeful.”
Aidan O’Brien runs U S S Michigan, who had been in the frame for the Kentucky Derby before he could finish only fourth in a trial for that race at Chelmsford. O’Brien is also represented by Antilles, second in the Chelmsford race.
Two runners have won their only race to date, Jessica Harrington’s Flash Gordon and Dermot Weld’s Shelir.