Aidan O’Brien – Trainer Profile

Aidan O’Brien
Circuit: UK and Ireland
Date of Birth:
County Tipperary, Ireland
UK and Ireland
Notable Horses:
Adelaide, Gleneagles, Found
Titles Awarded:
Champion Trainer (2007, 2008)
Biggest Wins:
  • £992,043: Sportingbet Cox Plate (Group 1) (3yo+) (Turf) – Oct 15, 2014
  • £145,000: Goffs Vincent O´Brien National Stakes (Group 1) (Entire Colts & Fillies) – Sept 14, 2014
  • £142,850: Total Prix Marcel Boussac – Criterium des Pouliches (Group 1) (2yo Fillies) (Turf) – Oct 5, 2014

About Aidan O’Brien

Aidan O’Brien is arguably the finest trainer of racehorses in the world today.

Based at the legendary Ballydoyle Stables in County Tipperary, Ireland who are in partnership with the world famous Coolmore Partners, O’Brien has continued the mythical status of the training establishment created by his namesake (no relation though) Dr Vincent O’Brien, considered by many to be the outstanding racehorse trainer of the 20th century.

Stepping into the shoes vacated by Vincent O’Brien on his retirement must have been a daunting challenge, but Aidan O‘Brien has proved well up to the task in handling the pick of blue-blooded thoroughbred horses owned by Ballydoyle’s triumvirate of owners; John Magnier, Michael Tabor, and Derrick Smith.

O’Brien is from a racing family and was a successful amateur rider before beginning the trainer career that caught the eye of the Ballydoyle bosses looking to find someone to continue Vincent O’Brien’s amazing work. Even though he was little known outside of his native Ireland, O’Brien soon became a household name across the racing world as he proved himself an outstanding trainer, guiding a series of amazing horses to a stack of top international prizes including more than 40 classic wins.

Having started out mainly training over jumps and proving a big hit at the winter game – he trained the mighty Istabraq to three successive Champion Hurdles in 1998, 1999 & 2000 – O’Brien switched mainly to the Flat in 1996 when he took over at Ballydoyle and the following season won the Irish 1000 Guineas with Classic Park, and the Irish 2000 Guineas a day later with Desert King. Desert King went on to follow-up in the Irish Derby, (a race O’Brien has won a remarkable 10 times), most recently with Camelot in 2012.

Success in the Epsom Derby has also proved easy to come by for the maestro who first won the great race in 2001 with the mighty Galileo, a superb horse who has gone on to become the legendary sire of many top-class horses. High Chaparral in 2002, Camelot in 2012, and Ruler of the World in 2013, have also won the blue riband British classic for O’Brien.

O’Brien has also won the Epsom Oaks 4 times, the English 2000 Guineas 6 times, the St Leger 4 times, and has had numerous winners at the showcase Royal Ascot meeting, including saddling the great Yeats to win four successive renewals of the Ascot Gold Cup.

Outside of the British Isles the great trainer has proved equally successful, winning a host of French and other European classics and enjoying considerable success at the Breeders Cup in the United States, as well as winning the Arlington Million, the Canadian International at Woodbine, and a stack of big races at the Dubai World Cup fixture.

A quietly spoken man who rarely gives the press more than a few standard lines about future plans for his horses, wherever O’Brien runs his horses they must be respected but there are a few tracks at which he has a particularly good strike rate. In Ireland he has a 27% winning percentage at Fairyhouse, Killarney, Navan and Tipperary, whilst at Limerick he enjoys a tremendous 40% strike rate. In England, O’Brien has a remarkable 50% strike rate at the unique Chester racecourse, and significantly 15% at Royal Ascot, a very healthy mark in view of the world class competition there.

O’Brien’s son Joseph was crowned champion Irish jockey in both 2012 and 2013 and has a brilliant 28% win rate for his father in Ireland and a fine 22% win rate in England. The yard also enjoy significant eyecatching success rates with other riders when competing in Britain, including Jamie Spencer (22%) and Ryan Moore (20%) [1].

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