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High Definition: Could Aidan O’Brien’s star emulate former stable hero Camelot?

High Definition leads the hopes for Ballydoyle in the Derby, but could we see him run at Newmarket beforehand?



High Definition ridden by jockey Seamie Heffernan wins The Alan Smurfit Memorial Beresford Stakes (Group 2) during day one of the Autumn Festival at Curragh Racecourse.

As with most seasons, Aidan O’Brien often unearths a gem of a two-year-old to tackle the Flat Classics a year later, and in 2020, the racing public perhaps saw that in the form of High Definition.

In January, the Master of Ballydoyle confirmed in an interview that Racing TV that his potential diamond may opt for the Derby Trial as opposed to the 2,000 Guineas next month.

High Definition ridden by Wayne Lordan (left) wins the Irish Stallion Farms EBF Maiden at Curragh Racecourse.
High Definition landed two contests at the Curragh in August and September last season

However, the undefeated son of Galileo remains a prominent figure in the betting should he make the journey to Newmarket on 1st May.

It is for the feature of the Epsom Derby Festival, though, that he remains top of the bill as he bids to secure his handler a third successive victory in the infamous contest.

Anthony Van Dyck and Serpentine were the previous two victors of the race in 2019 and 2020, respectively.

Aidan O’Brien chases a ninth win in the Derby later this year

And his Mrs John Magnier representative could be key to success once again if able to prove his stamina over the mile-and-a-half trip in Surrey this June.

The secret to his chances are yet to be decided, with questions marks lingering over whether he will head for the Rowley Mile in favour of a trip to Lingfield.


If he landed the Classic double, he would become the first horse since former O’Brien trained Camelot to achieve such a feat, when landing Suffolk and Downs success in 2012.

The legendary Sea The Stars produced the same glory for connections three years earlier, with the duo standing alone as the only pair to win the Double Crown in the 21st century.

Sea The Stars ridden by jockey Mick Kinane goes on to win the Investec Derby during Derby Day at Epsom Downs Racecourse
Sea The Stars won the 2,000 Guineas, Derby, Eclipse, International and Arc all as a three-year-old

You’d have to go back to Nashawan’s 1989 two-timer before that for the last time a contender followed up Newmarket fame with Epsom Downs fortune.

The great Nijinsky was the most recent winner of the Triple Crown, adding the St Leger at Doncaster on top of his two Classic successes prior.

Did you know? There hasn’t been a victor of the Epsom Derby with a horse whose name begins with a vowel since the turn of the millennium; Island Sands won the contest in 1999.

Dominic Chapman is senior content writer at Low6 with a passion for horse racing. He provides a NAP and NB every day throughout the week on selected National Hunt and Flat cards in both Britain and Ireland. Additionally, he hosts the Paddock Picks Podcast with former Welsh Grand National-winning pilot, Charlie Poste - the pair interviewing and discussing current racing topics with a special guest every week.