St Mark's Basilica eyes next Group One targets

Connections of St Mark's Basilica could line up the Juddmonte International or the Irish Champion Stakes as possible targets for the Coral-Eclipse winner.

Connections of St Mark's Basilica could line up the Juddmonte International or the Irish Champion Stakes as possible targets for the Coral-Eclipse winner.

St Mark's Basilica put in an impressive display at Sandown to beat top-class older horses Addeybb and Mishriff in the Group One 10-furlong Group One feature, which gave trainer Aidan O'Brien a joint-record sixth Eclipse triumph.

Adding to his Dewhurst victory of last year, plus his wins in the French 2000 Guineas and Derby this term, St Mark's Basilica delighted O'Brien in coming out on top in the first clash of the generations.

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He said: "We couldn't believe when Ryan asked him to quicken how well he did quicken. He quickens and has a great mind - he does everything.

"We felt he had stepped up since the last day and Ryan gave him a beautiful ride. I'm delighted for everybody.

"He's a relaxed traveller and doesn't use any energy. He comes on slowly and when you go for him he really turns it on. He has the mark of a special horse."

Asked about targets, the Ballydoyle trainer said: "The lads (Coolmore owners) will decide what they want to do, obviously he'd have options of maybe going to York (Juddmonte International) or Leopardstown (Irish Champion Stakes).

"I'd say something like that, depending on what the lads want to do.

"He's a horse with a lot of pace and a lot of quality."

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