HEADING into spring, Aidan O’Brien had what seemed the strongest group of three-year-olds of his storied career but things have not gone to plan in the early classics, his five runners in the Guineas in England and France doing no better than fourth, City Of Troy and Henry Longfellow particularly disappointing.

Their performances led to consternation, but could it simply be a case that they are needing a run? O’Brien commented post-Newmarket that he had treated City Of Troy as ‘too much of a god’, apt given his name, in spring while he seemed aware that Henry Longfellow was not fully ready ahead of ParisLongchamp last weekend.