Wednesday 13 December 2017

Cougar Ridge to foil No Jet Lag

Richard Forristal

Richard Forristal

Lambourn-based Tipperary native David Lanigan has passed up the opportunity to test No Jet Lag at Group One level tomorrow in favour of this evening's Listed Star Appeal Stakes at Dundalk.

A tilt at the Dewhurst had been on the agenda for the two-time-winning son of Johar, but Lanigan eventually opted for the €57,500 Irish Stallion Farms EBF-sponsored contest at the Louth facility. Successful on the all-weather at Lingfield prior to scoring in tidy fashion at Redcar in August, No Jet Lag finished a respectable second to John Gosden's smart Ashdan at Doncaster last time.

Given that the fourth and sixth that day have both won in the meantime, that is undoubtedly solid form, but the home defence here is not weak.

While Ballydoyle rely on Infanta Branca and Lines Of Battle, it is another Coolmore-owned prospect that appeals, the David Wachman-trained Cougar Ridge.

Desperately unlucky when just denied by Leitir Mor in a Curragh Group Three, the impressive Leopardstown maiden winner was running a solid race at Newbury last time before being on the receiving end of a hefty bump late on.

From there, his run petered out quickly behind the classy Moohaajim, one of the leading fancies for tomorrow's Middle Park.

If Cougar Ridge is to win a race such as this at Dundalk, he needs to show more mettle, but he will be better for his experience at Newbury. Wayne Lordan's mount is still a useful colt, and the step up to seven furlongs should not be an issue.

In the juvenile maiden, the same partnership will take plenty of beating with Attire, a runner-up on its debut here in May.

Urban Ball appeals for John Oxx and Johnny Murtagh in the 12-furlong fillies' equivalent, while Mick Halford and Shane Foley have serious claims with Zalanga in division one of the handicap.

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