O'Brien Gets 6th Phoenix in Row with 'Cool Cat

One Cool Cat gave trainer Aidan O'Brien his sixth consecutive Phoenix Stakes (Ire-I) for 2-year-olds, capping a four-win day for the Ballydoyle racing operation at The Curragh Sunday.

The O'Brien team, including jockey Mick Kinane, also won with High Chaparral in the Royal Whip (Ire-II) and with the filly Necklace in the Debutante Stakes (Ire-III).

One Cool Cat, a son of Storm Cat who runs for Mrs. John Magnier, tallied by a length over stablemate Old Deuteronomy, his third win at six furlongs this season. The entry was second favorite at 11-8. The win left O'Brien ecstatic.

"This is basically a seven-furlong or a mile horse so to do what he has done over six furlongs says a lot about him," O'Brien told the Racing Post. "He is a unique colt and a very relaxed one. The moves he makes in the middle of his work would knock you dead.

One Cool Cat follows Lavery, Fasliyev, Minardi, Johannesburg and Spartacus, O'Brien's previous winners of the event. Paddy Prendergast's won the race a record seven straight times between 1950-56.

The O'Brien runners, held up toward the rear of the seven-horse pack, rallied past Three Valleys shortly after that one had gone to the front about a furlong-and-a-half from home. One Cool Cat was in control in the final furlong and was not extended in winning. Old Deuteronomy, who O'Brien said would favor firmer ground, wound up three lengths ahead of Three Valleys. Michael Tabor's Devil Moon was fourth. The six-furlong time was 1:11.4 on good turf.

O'Brien said he is considering next month's Moyglare Stud Stakes for Necklace, who took the Robert H. Griffin Debutante by a length over Caldy Dancer. She covered the seven furlongs on good ground in 1:25 while besting 12 opponents. Red Feather was third, 3 1/2 lengths behind the winner.

Kinane roused the winner from the pack to challenge in second a furlong from home, holding off the challenge of Caldy Dancer late.

Barry Hills' impressive Sandown winner Lucky Pipit was 12th.

O'Brien and Kinane also won with newcomer Troubador, a convincing winner of the maiden stakes for Robert Sangster.