Sport Horse Racing

Monday 22 January 2018

Exotic steps back at Gowran

Trainer Aidan O'Brien
Trainer Aidan O'Brien

Connections of Exotic feel the potential exciting filly will be sharper for the run in the Irish Stallion Farms EBF Victor McCalmont Memorial Stakes at Gowran today.

The four-year-old daughter of Galileo won impressively on her debut over a mile and a half at Galway last August, but has not been seen since.

Aidan O'Brien's inmate holds a raft of fancy entries ahead of this Listed race over a shorter distance, but the Ballydoyle team are taking nothing for granted. “Stepping back in trip from a mile and a half to a mile and one is probably a negative, but she has done well from three to four,” said jockey Joseph O’Brien. “We are hoping she can run a nice race, but she'll come on for it.”

Mizzava is the joint-highest-rated horse in the field after having shown good form in top company as a three-year-old.

“She has got a good rating and the race suits her,” said trainer Mick Halford. “She had a very good run at Royal Ascot (fifth in the Coronation Stakes) and has got stronger over the winter. I'm sure she'll improve.”

Others of note include the Group Three-winning Euphrasia, We'll Go Walking and I'm Yours, whose trainer Dermot Weld has claimed this race three times in the last six years.

First Lieutenant is set to wear blinkers for the first time in public as he bids to win his first race in over a year. The Mouse Morris-trained nine-year-old, which last got his head in front in the Betfred Bowl last April but has placed in four Grade Ones, goes for Wednesday’s Punchestown Gold Cup.

“We will probably run him in blinkers as he could be getting a bit cute. In the same race we might also run Bog Warrior, who is very ground-dependent, but he also has the option of the Ladbrokes World Series Hurdle,” said Eddie O'Leary of owners Gigginstown.

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