Feature Story

Troy for Eclipse; Los Angeles for Irish Derby

Troy for Eclipse; Los Angeles for Irish Derby Jun 10, 2024

By Duane Fonseca - 

Derby winner City Of Troy’s connections have announced he will sidestep the Irish Derby and instead be targeted at next month’s Group 1 Coral-Eclipse at Sandown Park on July 6.

The Justify colt erased memories of his dismal ninth in the 2000 Guineas by returning to the winners’ enclosure at Epsom Downs following a spectacular near-three-length success.

And his trainer Aidan O’Brien, who claimed a 10th Derby in the process, has confirmed his 2023 champion juvenile will skip the Irish equivalent of the race at The Curragh on June 30 for the Sandown highlight.

The Coral-Eclipse is run over a 2000m strip, two furlongs (400m) shorter than the 2400m distance of the Derby, and despite having to go up against the older generation in the race, O’Brien is confident his trainee can deliver the goods.

“City Of Troy has pleased everyone since Epsom and the plan is to head to Sandown next for the Eclipse. We were delighted with him at Epsom and we’ve been delighted with him at home since then too. It’s all gone smoothly,” said O’Brien, who won a seventh Eclipse last year with Paddington.

“He has plenty of pace so the drop to ten furlongs won’t be a problem for him and we’re all looking forward to seeing what he can do at Sandown.”

Los Angeles, third behind City Of Troy at Epsom, is Ballydoyle’s leading hope in the Irish Derby now, with O’Brien declaring: “Los Angeles ran a big race at Epsom and has done well since. We think the Irish Derby will suit him.”