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27 Apr 24 16:32
Date Joined: 28 Sep 04
| Topic/replies: 9,393 | Blogger: Figgis's blog
On winning the Superlative there was a case to be made that City Of Troy could be something special, assuming that his main opponents behind all ran up to their best. At the time I was inclined to believe this was more likely than not to have been the case. After the Dewhurst result I revised my view of the Superlative and now think the main opposition ran below par. In the future I could, of course, be proved to have been wrong to change my mind. However, with the Dewhurst result the likes of Timeform and the RP were even more impressed. There has been much talk of him being another Frankel, winning the Guineas by daylight, etc.

I completely agree that City Of Troy showed enough to possibly win a Guineas. This century I have other horses on the same mark or even slightly lower who were Guineas winners. The likes of Golan, Refuse To Bend, Footstepsinthesand, Cockney Rebel and Camelot didn't run any faster than City Of Troy has before winning the Guineas. However, they were all moderate winners. For me, O'Brien 2yos like George Washington, Australia and even Auguste Rodin had run to a higher level than COT. City Of Troy didn't achieve anything truly outstanding on the clock in the Dewhurst. Unless you subscribe to the Timeform theory that he could've run another 9lbs faster if the race had been run differently. Needless to say, I believe this to be hypothetical nonsense.

For those not too fussed about the clock, do they really believe that a 3.5 length beating of Alynaabi ( a horse who just scraped home from Boiling Point in a Gp3 previously) and a 4.5 length beating of Eben Shaddad does not merely point to a horse who could possibly win a poor Guineas, but one who will go on to be a superstar? If he does go on to win the Guineas impressively there will be the usual aftertimers saying he was free money at any price. But I'm interested to know how many punters at this stage don't just think that City Of Troy is capable of winning a Guineas, they go along with the current media narrative, and actually believe that he's shown enough already that he looks a future world beater?
Pause Switch to Standard View City Of Troy - Future wonder horse?
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Report FOYLESWAR April 27, 2024 5:25 PM BST
he could of course be a superstar but i have my doubts ,the media /racing world and his connections badly want  him to be  a superstar , likely he  could have more to come but there are a few in there who are unbeaten and a few who have very good form in the book . hannon seems very keen on rosalion ,appleby has ancient wisdom and the unbeaten notable speech ,ghost writer and night raider task force plus a fair few others in the mix . at the odds id rather have a few on my side at big prices than odds on cot.
Report impossible123 April 27, 2024 7:17 PM BST
I think he'll be the real McCoy - the genuine article. I do not think we've seen the best of him yet; 8f and further will see him in better light, I believe. To me he's very different to the past ones AOB heaped praises on eg Auguste Rodin, Saxon Warrior, Australia and even Luxembourg; the previous ones eg Camelot and Gleneagles I'm not at all familiar with. 

His winning times have not set any record given the ground condition eg soft or good to soft esp his last win (very soft) in The Dewhurst; connection very nearly took him out of The Dewhurst despite sluicing to a very comfortable win in the end. His prowess is his acceleration in the last two furlongs when the turbo kicked in; I hope Moore could pull him up without too much bother after 8f.

I hope he wins convincingly next saturday, and then marches towards Epsom like an equine superstar. However, he'll need to race next season too before he can be compared to the superstars of the past eg Dancing Brave and Frankel.
Report Try My Best April 27, 2024 11:14 PM BST
What in your opinion makes a future wonder horse?. Some on here cribbed that Frankel couldn't be labelled the best as he did not do it over and was not given the chance to prove himself over 1m 4f. Was Oh So Sharp a wonder horse when she won the fillies triple crown? The horse can only beat what is in front of it and if he wins on Saturday and then wins the Derby does that make him a wonder horse or is he supposed to win the King George, Irish Champion Stakes and then the Arc followed by the Breeders Cup Classic to give him that label. If he beats a sub standard lot in all his races this year does that make him a wonder horse or will they say he beat nothing and can't be classed in the same bracket as some other horses. It's Ok to have an opinion that you don't think he's as good as some might think and always refreshing to hear an alternative view and standpoint when he's trading at 4/6 and looking to possibly get him beat with a bigger priced horse. You will certainly have a lot of them running for you.
Report Figgis April 27, 2024 11:57 PM BST
Some on here cribbed that Frankel couldn't be labelled the best as he did not do it over and was not given the chance to prove himself over 1m 4f

Yes they did and those people were being ridiculous.

Was Oh So Sharp a wonder horse when she won the fillies triple crown?

No, it was a fine achievement from horse and trainer, but even though her Oaks win was very good, she never actually put up an outstanding performance.

if he wins on Saturday and then wins the Derby does that make him a wonder horse

Not necessarily by just winning those races. Camelot achieved that in a weak year. In a decent season he wouldn't have won either race.

One or two well above average Gp1 wins will do it for me. For me, Obrien's best winners of the Guineas were George Washington, Henrythenavigator (his performance was generally underrated in my opinion) and Rock Of Gibraltar. If City Of Troy can put up a similar performance then I'll credit him as an above average miler. Henrythenavigator and ROG both improved significantly to win the Guineas, so maybe COT can do the same. However, George Washington and even Hawk Wing had put up better performances as 2yos than COT. Hailing COT in the same bracket, or even higher, is very premature on what he's actually shown.
Report Figgis April 28, 2024 12:00 AM BST
I'll credit him as an above average miler

Above average in Gp1 terms. Obviously he's already an above average miler.
Report Try My Best April 28, 2024 2:55 AM BST
How do you define an outstanding performance? Some horses just do enough to win and some but not many win like Frankel and he struggled on a couple of occasions. I think it's very subjective when it comes to classing them as wonder horses. Some might say that Frankel beat up a moderate bunch time and time again and his Guineas field was very moderate and he never competed abroad. Most would label him one of the best. Not sure what you are getting at regards COT. George Washington beat a stayer in Sir Percy, Henry just got the better of New Approach another Derby winner and The Rock beat an unfortunate Hawk Wing. Do you class the above Guineas winners as wonder horses because they beat subsequent classic winners/Group 1 performers? One thing is for sure if COT can't beat this lot on Saturday he certainly isn't any wonder horse. You say one or two above average group 1 wins will do it for you. Are you basing this on time, how far he wins by or the quality of opposition he beats? I didn't see any of the above pulverising a field as a 2 year old like COT did on the July Course.
Report Try My Best April 28, 2024 3:17 AM BST
Hawk Wing was rated 115 after he won the National Stakes and George 122 when he won the same race. COT 118 after the Dewhurst. Both Hawk Wing and ROG beaten at 2 COT undefeated at 2. To be rated higher than Hawk Wing at 2 is a pretty good benchmark for me. Anyway the horse still has to show up on the day and do the business.
Report FOYLESWAR April 28, 2024 9:19 AM BST
on ratings betting  and form cot is the likeliest winner of the gns but it doesnt always work out that way , even if cot wins on sat and goes on to win the derby and whatever there will always be knockers comparing him to past greats like dancing brave and frankel etc, he could be a class apart but my question! is he value at odds on ? in what could be a very strong line up !
Report Jumper45 April 28, 2024 11:33 AM BST
I think with City of Troy it's been the style of both racing and winning, in all of his 3 races. Confidently ridden each time, not afraid to boss it from the front at an above average racing pace, and in each instance, putting the race to bed at or just within the last furlong. Yet he still powers to the line and doesn't look like stopping. Maiden, G2 and the Dewhurst.

Then we see who he is trained by.

Yes, he still has to turn up on the day and do the business, but I'm struggling to see any negatives, not even any stable concerns, which of course we have to take on face value.
Report Jumper45 April 28, 2024 11:55 AM BST
One also has to ask, who could possibly beat him? Notable Speech comes along with a very odd Guineas preparation, 3 winning runs on the all weather and yet to race in any group class company. If he wasn't trained by Appleby, he'd be double his current price.
Report Try My Best April 28, 2024 1:13 PM BST
I'm not so sure it is a strong line up FOYLESWAR. Is Ancient Wisdom running, market seems to have doubts, Night Raider needs to step up considerably, Alyanaabi place prospects for me and had a bit of each way money on this one. Notable Speech same thoughts as Jumper45 but who knows may be very good and the obvious danger Rosallion who has had Sunway and Iberian finish in front of him at Doncaster (Trainer blaming the ground).
Report Figgis April 28, 2024 1:27 PM BST
Ratings are supposed to be based on the performance achieved. They are not supposed to be calculated on the supposition that even though the horse won by a length, the compiler guessed it was value for 6 lengths. Also points are not supposed to be added on because one horse proved more versatile than another. For me, the prospect of COT putting up a wonder horse Frankel (which is the horse the media keep comparing him with) type performance looks massively optimistic. Happy to be proved wrong, as I like to see great racehorses as much as any racing fan, whether I've opposed them or not.

My point is that beating Alyanaabi and Eben Shaddad by those margins simply puts COT in the ballpark of a horse who could possibly win a Guineas. It in no way suggests he could be an exceptional Gp1 performer.
Report Try My Best April 28, 2024 3:11 PM BST
I think it's a bit unreasonable to compare any horse after 3 runs with Frankel (just my opinion)but I think COT has done everything he has been asked to do and has done it quite impressively. I will be heading off to Newmarket on Thursday for the Guineas festival and would really like to see him put up a winning performance. Like you said it is always great to see a potentially top class horse.
Report Figgis April 28, 2024 3:48 PM BST
I am only giving my point of view at this stage of the game. I may well end up kicking myself for not sticking with my earlier opinion of the Superlative form. Although at the price he is now I won't be kicking myself as hard as I have over some of my other past errors of judgement. To be fair, I don't think anyone has said he's going to be another Frankel, they have just speculated that he might be. My argument is that the Dewhurst time/form is what he has been rated highly on and I just can't see how that piece of form suggests he could be any better than O'Brien's other good milers from the past. Other than him being  still unbeaten so potentially capable of more, but you could say that about any runner unbeaten after only 3 runs.

So my question to other punters is are the media and ratings firms right to rate COT as highly likely to be better than the vast majority of Guineas prospects from years gone by?
Report Howellsy April 28, 2024 6:05 PM BST
The Dewhurst time by definition was not exceptional as Ancient Wisdom put up an almost exactly similar time in relation to standard, over further to boot, on the same day. I genuinely believe Ancient Wisdom could beat COT on good to soft ground. There has been a lot of rain overnight and into Sunday mid day. There is more heavy rain forecast on Thursday. I just wonder if Appleby has got AW ready. There has been very little noise about him. I fundamentally agree with Figgis but the opposition looks weak to me, with Rosallion not a certain stayer in my book, and little else with the form to compete bar AW if the ground is ok. I still think Dancing Gemini is there or thereabouts but I can't see him beating COT.
Report Figgis April 28, 2024 7:19 PM BST
Howellsy, is it purely pedigree why you see Rosallion as a doubtful stayer?
Report A_T April 29, 2024 12:45 PM BST
for all his great achievements Aidan has never really had a wonder 3yo and none of his would feature in my top 10 for the last 20 years. Galileo probably his best. The 3yos seem to tail off in form and he's never had a Frankel, Sea the Stars or Zarkava - or even an Ace Impact.

COT has to be favourite for he guineas but he could be another Air Force Blue who started odds-on at Newmarket but never troubled the judges that day or afterwards.
Report duffy April 29, 2024 4:29 PM BST
If he is going to be compared to a Frankel then simply by winning by 6 with head in chest won't do it, he needs to do what Frankel, what a wonder horse did, lots of horses, lots of top class horses win races easily, but what separates a "wonder horse" is that he can run in a classic and blow the field apart after 2 furlongs and keep it up doing all his own work throughout.

What Frankel did that day and the burst of speed he showed in the Queen Anne I've never seen before, O'Brien has had any number of superstars going into their 3 year old year, we hear it practically every year, if this is a real one then take up the running from the gate and lead the whole way pulling clear to past half way, that's what a "wonder horse" would do.

Winning the race just isn't enough, by definition, if he is a superstar/wonder horse he needs to put in a performance where we all fall off of our chairs...go do it.
Report Figgis April 29, 2024 4:42 PM BST
Duffy, I agree. My real point is that I don't even see why this horse is supposed to have any better credentials than lots of other horses O'Brien has had going into the Guineas. And for my money, he's had a few in the past that have shown a higher level than this.
Report TornUpTickets April 29, 2024 5:46 PM BST
There's plenty of reason not to emulate Frankel in the 2000 Guineas. For a start, Frankel had already won the Greenham so was not making his seasonal reappearance and would have been a bit fitter as a result. Second, Frankel gave himself a harder race than necessary and it showed the next time out when he almost got chinned by Zoffany at Royal Ascot.
Report Figgis April 29, 2024 6:02 PM BST
After the Dewhurst my view has remained that, while COT is a horse who might just win a poor Guineas, he wasn't even the fastest 2yo colt in the yard, that was Henry Longfellow. Obviously Coolmore will have a handle on how the horses have shaped up this spring. It may be that HL isn't as far forward as COT. Nevertheless, my guess is that they have been swayed by all the praise heaped on COT's racecourse performances (not that there's anything necessarily wrong with that) and there's no doubt that for stallion purposes they desperately want COT to be their number one.
Report Howellsy April 29, 2024 6:06 PM BST
Figgis, the record of sprint sires in the Guineas in recent decades is very poor, with Magna Grecia the only one I can think of, and he was proven at a mile at 2. I accept there is stamina in the dam side but that must have been the case for many of the sprint bred sires over the years and very few have won. He might well stay, but I wouldn't presume it.
Report impossible123 April 29, 2024 8:32 PM BST
Someone wants £1k at 1.75. Someone on the forum or a City gent? Betvictor is only 4/7.
Report .Marksman. May 3, 2024 9:33 PM BST
Timeform View
Aidan O'Brien has made little secret of the fact that he regards CITY OF TROY as the best 2-y-o he's trained

Well that seems to be good enough for Timeform.  Shows how some people are easily satisfied.  Once upon a time, Timeform was once the most respected horse racing analyst on this side of the Atlantic, but now they seem to have no respect:  Sold out to a buyer (whose name escapes me at the moment).

Regarding City of Troy, as I have said I would be laying him when he goes odds on and I have been doing that.  If I lose on the race, there are more top races this year and in future years.  If I lose and they try to suspend my account due to affordability checks I will point out that, about 11 years ago, they took over a thousand off me in PC charges and that is more than I will lose if City of Troy wins tomorrow.  PC charge affected my mental health along with bookmaker stake reductions and account closures.  I'm warning Betfair:  Don't even think about it!
Report Figgis May 3, 2024 10:12 PM BST
.Marksman, yes that Timeform comment made me laugh too. I think I remember AOB saying the same kind of statement at least three or four times before about other 2yos. It's pretty clear by now that Coolmore know the time of day when it comes to assessing 2yos who are probably going to be Gp1 class, or, at least, borderline Gp1 class. It's also pretty clear that generally they don't know much more than that. They don't really know which ones are going to be above average Gp1 horses. And, by the way, I'm not suggesting they should definitely know the difference until it's proved on the track. I imagine it's very difficult to know for sure at home when it's vital not to bottom a horse before it gets to the racecourse.
Report A_T May 4, 2024 7:15 AM BST
I think it was john gosden who once said that the guineas is the last 2yo race - most winners of the race were good juveniles who did very little winning after newmarket.

we won't find out today if cot is a frankel or seas the stars - or just another saxon warrior or gleneagles
Report impossible123 May 4, 2024 9:12 AM BST
I'd be terribly disappointed if City Of Troy turns out to be a Saxon Warrior. The latter had a battalion who rode-shotgun and then opened a path to his victory.

No boost from 365 on him. Let's hope it's a clear race with no untoward event at the stalls.
Report FOYLESWAR May 4, 2024 3:42 PM BST
ah thank you !willy boo!
Report duffy May 4, 2024 3:43 PM BST
Good hit FiggisCool
Report A_T May 4, 2024 4:18 PM BST
surely too bad to be just a case of not training on
Report JayTrumpOldTomDubbl May 4, 2024 4:39 PM BST
Figgis 29th April 6.02pm post...brilliant call.......again.
Report cryoftruth May 4, 2024 5:08 PM BST
The favourite looked weak. He looked useless and I suspect he may have had something wrong with him, and not train3d on.
He will be off to stud now surely.
Report brandyontherocks May 4, 2024 6:45 PM BST
Well done winners.
Great call again from Fig.
Well done Marksman for laying him.
Report Howellsy May 4, 2024 7:04 PM BST
Well done Figgis. You went big on this and were proved right. I could never quite bring myself to oppose him when Ancient Wisdom was not entered - a decision which makes a bit more sense now.
Report Figgis May 4, 2024 9:27 PM BST
Thanks Howellsy. But only a loss to show, as I went win only Rosallion and didn't have a penny on Haatem for the place, so not that well done. My thinking was that Rosallion would either run his race and win or be out of the frame. Hopefully Fallen Angel gets the readies tomorrow. If she runs her race I don't see her beaten.
Report paulo47 May 5, 2024 8:26 AM BST
Me too , Haatem from 30 to 44 on machine ..thought I would do the place on the day , then thought too skinny ...never mind , thoroughly enjoyed the race and even ITV were better that usual .
Report impossible123 May 5, 2024 11:35 AM BST
Haatem was 25/1 for 3-places. But, not a penny on!
Report FOYLESWAR May 5, 2024 7:29 PM BST
well done marksman
Report .Marksman. May 8, 2024 3:56 PM BST
Thanks Foyles.
Report impossible123 May 22, 2024 4:45 PM BST
3.8 here - still no taker.
Report jerseyboy May 28, 2024 5:46 PM BST
Will it even run
Report impossible123 May 28, 2024 8:55 PM BST
I think he will or the reputation of AOB, and the breeding value of Justify could take a major knock here. Personally, I'd like to see him tackle 10f 1st eg Eclipse or Juddmonte Int given the 2000G was an abyss only connections could not accept probably for financial reasons eg as a stallion.
Report jledi May 28, 2024 11:44 PM BST
there was a lot of talk before the Guinness that it may not of trained on because of it's prodigy, i think they could be right, the horse is drifting quite badly.
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