O’Brien earns four winners on first day

Aidan O'Brien with son Joseph

Aidan O’Brien with son Joseph (right), who did not see any of his winners because he was too busy scouting new horses

Former champion flat jockey Joseph O’Brien enjoyed a spectacular first day as a trainer with four winners, with three of them ridden by his siblings.

Two came at Ireland’s Gowran Park where O’Brien’s 17-year-old brother Donnacha rode Justice Frederick and then Zig Zag to victory.

More remarkably, Justice Frederick beat a horse trained by their father, Aidan.

Mai Fitzs Jack won O’Brien’s first winner at Listowel and his sister, Sarah, claimed a second on Oathkeeper.

Multiple Classic winner O’Brien has been overseeing a team of horses at his family’s Piltown yard, but until he completed all his training modules they were competing under the name of his father, Aidan.

The 23-year-old was not there to see any of his winners, he was too busy sourcing new horses at the sales.

Aidan O’Brien was at Listowel, where he said: “Straight away I got put in my place!

“It was great in Gowran and our own horse [runner-up Leo Minor] maybe got a little tired. I underestimated the strength of Joseph’s horse, obviously.

“It has been an incredible day – how can you improve on that?”


Horse racing correspondent Cornelius Lysaght

OK, the horses weren’t slow-coaches and Joseph is hardly a rookie because he’s been assisting his dad for some time, receiving credit for his part in a whole lot of successes.

But to clock up four winners on your first day is still spectacular, made even better I guess by the involvement of jockey-brother Donnacha and jockey-sister Sarah.

Success for Aidan has been based on all kinds of things, one a single-mindedness to do things his way; Joseph chose to attend the sales and not the races today, so a chip off the old block?

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