O'Brien lands first city two-year-old of the season

Flemington trainer Danny O'Brien outlined plans to aim smart colt Galen for next month's $1 million Blue Diamond Stakes after he proved too strong for his opposition at Sandown today.

The son of former champion three-year-old Galileo had race experience on his side having run second to quality colt Kaphero over 1000m at Flemington on Boxing Day at his race debut.

"That's probably the best form we've seen," O'Brien said referring to the Flemington race.

"But they will start coming out from here on."

While O'Brien has a good opinion of Galen he said he has a couple of nice two-year-old fillies in his stable as well.

Galen was backed from $2.35 to start $2.15 favourite today and scored comfortably by 1-1/4 lengths from the David Hayes-trained debutante Sinikka ($2.35) in the AAMI Blue Diamond Stakes 2nd Acceptances - 10th January Plate (1000m) with Tsubasa ($41) three-quarters of a length away third.

"He's the first two-year-old I've run in town this season," said O'Brien who has 50 two-year-olds in all.

O'Brien has 13 juveniles engaged in the Blue Diamond (1200m) at Caulfield on February 25.

"I'll keep him going as he's such a tough, honest galloper," O'Brien said of Galen.

Even though the colt is a son of an English Derby, Irish Derby and King George and Queen Elizabeth Stakes winner, O'Brien has no qualms about him being up and running relatively early.

"He's by Galileo but he's never gone shin sore and never missed a feed," he said.

"They're the ones you can afford to put some pressure on."

An $80,000 purchase at the Australian Easter Yearling Sale in Sydney last year, Galen is raced by Hong Kong-based Keith Hsu.

O'Brien said Galen's next appearance would be in the $100,000 AAMI Blue Diamond Preview for colts and geldings over 1000m at Sandown on January 26.

Like today's race, the Listed event will be run on the Lakeside track.

by Mark Ryan - aapracingandsports

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