Merchant Navy Confirmed for Royal Ascot
Tara Madgwick - Tuesday March 13

Coolmore have today confirmed Group I VRC Coolmore Stud Stakes winning colt Merchant Navy will join Aidan O'Brien's string at Coolmore's training operation Ballydoyle in Ireland in preparation for a tilt at Royal Ascot.


Merchant Navy is to be trained by Aidan O'Brien for Royal AScotAn unbeaten stakes winning two-year-old, Merchant Navy was an eye-catching third in the Grroup I VRC Newmarket Handicap over 1200m at Flemington on Saturday, with his closing 600m split of 32.09 seconds the fastest clocked by any horse on the card.


"I am very excited by Merchant Navy, " said O'Brien. "I was very interested to see his run on Saturday and I thought he was unlucky not to win. I love that he can produce a long, sustained burst of speed and the Gr.1 Diamond Jubilee at Royal Ascot looks the perfect race for him ".


Trainer Ciaron Maher, who sourced Merchant Navy at the 2016 Inglis Easter Yearling Sale, said; "Merchant Navy was an outstanding yearling and I have rated him as something special ever since the day he first cantered. He is a brilliant colt with an incredible constitution and I look forward to him showcasing his talent at Royal Ascot. Aidan has invited me to visit Ballydoyle to discuss the horse in the coming days and I am very much looking forward to that. I have no doubt that he is a horse capable of excelling on the world stage. "


A $350,000 Inglis Easter purchase from the Segenhoe Stud draft, Merchant Navy will depart Australia with the imposing record of five wins and two thirds from eight starts with prizemoney of $939,950.