Aidan O'Brien will be sending two runners from Ballydoyle to Belmont Park for next weekend's Woodward Stakes (gr. I) and Man o'War Stakes (gr. IT). O'Brien will be represented by Hold That Tiger in the Woodward and the lightly raced Carpanetto in the Man o'War.
Hold That Tiger, who impressed Americans last fall with his fast-closing third in the Breeders' Cup Juvenile (gr. I) after breaking badly and losing a ton of ground on both turns, will return to the U. S. after a disappointing series of races in Europe this year.
Although everyone expected the son of Storm Cat to return for the Kentucky Derby, owners Michael Tabor and Mrs. John Magnier elected to keep the colt in Europe and point instead of the 2,000 Guineas, where he finished a dismal 17th. He did run a solid fourth in the subsequent St. James's Palace Stakes (Eng-I) at a mile at Royal Ascot, but turned in another poor effort in the group I Coral Eclipse Stakes at Sandown, finishing ninth.
O'Brien is hoping a return to the dirt will enable Hold That Tiger to return to his Breeders' Cup form.
Accompanying him to Belmont will be Michael Tabor's Carpanetto, who has won two of his four career starts, including a second, beaten a head, in the Ballyroan Stakes at Leopardstown. The son of Arc de Triomphe winner Peintre Celebre, out of the Sadler's Wells mare Royal Ballet, was purchased as a yearling at Tattersalls for $775,320.
Also heading to Belmont is American Oaks winner Dimitrova, who is being pointed for the grade I Garden City Breeders' Cup on Sep. 14, along with several other European runners. Trained in Ireland by Dermot Weld, the 3-year-old daughter of Swain previously had finished a close third in the Irish One Thousand Guineas (Ire-I) before scoring by two lengths in the second running of the American Oaks at Hollywood Park on July 5.
According to the International Racing Bureau, last year's Breeders' Cup Mile (gr. IT) winner Domedriver is heading to Woodbine for the Atto Mile (gr. IT), while Dubai World Cup (UAE-I) winner Moon Ballad will contest the 1 1/4-mile Irish Champion Stakes, in what could be his prep for the Breeders' Cup Classic-Powered by Dodge (gr. I).