O'Brien hoping for Dawn delight
Joseph O'Brien appears to hold an outstanding chance of riding his first British Group One winner when he gets the leg-up on Await The Dawn in the Juddmonte International Stakes at York.
Injury to Ryan Moore and the lack of a stable jockey at Aidan O'Brien's operation has led to the all-conquering trainer turning to a range of other riders and his son has begun to establish himself as one of the first choices.
Joseph has already enjoyed success in an Irish Classic when taking the 2000 Guineas with Roderic O'Connor and helped Maybe to land the Group Two Debutante Stakes in impressive style earlier this month.
Await The Dawn, who was lightly raced at two and three, looked a star in the making as a four-year-old in the Huxley Stakes at Chester and the Hardwicke Stakes at Royal Ascot.
The jockey said: "I haven't ridden him in a race but I know him well at home. He's a lovely big horse and you'd say he was very uncomplicated. His form looks good from Ascot, so hopefully he will run well."
Race sponsor Khalid Abdullah has been linked with the International for many years and almost won it with Twice Over last year before he was pipped by O'Brien's Rip Van Winkle. The three-time Group One winner quelled a dip in his form by striking in the York Stakes over course and distance last month and tries again.
Sir Henry Cecil's stable jockey Tom Queally, however, has opted to ride the same owner's outstanding mare Midday after she claimed the Nassau Stakes for the third year in a row.
The trainer told At The Races: "Twice Over has been with us for quite a few years and has become part of the furniture. Unfortunately in Flat racing, horses tend to leave at the end of their three-year-old careers and I can see why National Hunt trainers get attached to their horses, because they are with them a long time.
"He is a lovely looking horse, big with a good head on him. He's a real gentleman and has done terribly well. He's won the Champion Stakes twice, won the Eclipse. He was pretty good as a three-year-old too, and was third in the St James's Palace. He's a very good horse in his own right."
On the opposition, Cecil added: "Await The Dawn is a decent horse, he won over the trip at Chester and won at Royal Ascot in the Hardwicke. He's a good horse and has only had six or seven runs. He's a pretty formidable opponent, but I'm going to try."