AIDAN O’BRIEN has indicated the Mile event on turf rather than the Classic on dirt is currently the favoured Breeders Cup option for Rip Van Winkle at Churchill Downs next month.
Although the champion trainer stressed that no final decisions have been made about Breeders Cup running plans he did indicate yesterday that a clash with Goldikova in the Mile is more likely for Rip Van Winkle than taking on America’s best over 10 furlongs.
“We’ve always felt a mile is his best trip. He’s a horse with so much pace. We’re looking at either the Classic or the Mile for him but the Mile is probably being favoured a bit stronger at the moment,” O’Brien said.
Rip Van Winkle was unplaced in last year’s Classic on the Santa Anita Pro-Ride surface and is currently a 7-1 third favourite for the Mile at America’s richest meeting of the year on November 6th.
O’Brien also indicated he is looking at the mile and a half Turf race at Churchill Downs for Fame And Glory which could mean a return clash with Workforce who had the Ballydoyle star behind him in last weekend’s Prix de l’Arc de Triomphe.