Connections of Mendelssohn are confident their charge will improve after he finished third at Belmont Park on Saturday night.
The three-year-old returned to action for the first time since his disappointing performance in the Kentucky Derby.
The bay colt made a strong start in the Grade Three Dwyer Stakes and was out in front alongside Noble Indy.
He was eventually reeled in and Firenze Fire and Seven Trumpets beat him into first and second.
The Aidan O’Brien-trained cold performed well in the conditions and O’Brien’s assistant, T.J. Comerford, insists he still has a bright future.
He told www.bloodhorse.com: “It was a good-run race. Aidan was very happy with him, he watched it at home.
He thinks it was a great start since (Kentucky Derby), and he thinks we can build on it.
“I’d say the Breeders’ Cup Classic is still the ultimate goal, but he has a lot of bridges to cross before then.
I thought it was a good run on the dirt. We can’t keep stopping and starting. It was a good stepping stone for the next one.”
O’Brien still had a big win on the card as Athena won the Belmont Oaks just a week after coming third at the Curragh.
However, it was disappointment for him at Sandown as Saxon Warrior could only finish second in the Coral Eclipse. He battled gamely before eventually losing to old rival Roaring Lion.