Highflying King can reign supreme with Street Party
Connor King, the 16-year-old riding sensation, who is due to begin studying for his Leaving Certificate exams in September, is trusted to deliver the nap vote on Street Party at Leopardstown tonight.
Already sitting in pole position at the head of this term's apprentice riders' championship, King – a former pony racing champion who hails from Kilbrin in north Cork – has been booked by his boss David Wachman for the Coolmore-owned gelding in the 10-furlong apprentices' handicap.
One of four three-year-olds in what is a competitive nine-runner contest, Street Party appeals as being the most progressive option.
While he has been slow to gather momentum in seven starts to date, his last couple of runs have been encouraging, particularly a two-length third to Great Explorer over this course and distance a fortnight ago. He kept on well to the line that day, yet he gets in here off a 2lb lower mark, which rises to 6lbs when you factor in King's claim.
Granted, Street Party will need to improve again against his older rivals, but the suspicion is that he has the scope to do so.
In the Morocco Sorec Handicap, King's David Marnane-trained partner Carenza might also have a big say.
Ballydoyle's Mars should make the most of the drop in class in the Jockey Club Of Turkey Meld Stakes.
With the likes of Along Came Casey, Sweet Lightning and Scintillula among the opposition, this is not a bad Group Three.
Still, Mars ought to prove different class, having performed with credit in four Group Ones, latterly when fourth to Al Kazeem in the Eclipse at Sandown.
Aidan and Joseph O'Brien might also take the Korean Racing Authority Tyros Stakes – another €60,000 Group Three – with Sir John Hawkins.
Stablemate Expedition and Ger Lyons' dual winner Exogenesis are among those with chances in the seven-furlong contest. However, Sir John Hawkins, due to sport blinkers for a first time here, ran as though he needs this trip when a one-paced fourth over six at Newmarket two weeks ago.
Over jumps at Limerick, local handler Michael Hourigan can take the Grant Thornton Novice Chase with the Ruby Walsh-ridden Whats Happening, while in the qualified riders' hurdle, Jane Mangan gets the nod to steer PJ Colville's Quiverhill Dreamon to success.