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Leopardstown double can give Weld some solace


Weld: Zawraq a worry

Weld: Zawraq a worry


Weld: Zawraq a worry

Radanpour can help to ease some of Dermot Weld's Derby pain by completing a hat-trick in this evening's King George V Cup at Leopardstown.

The €47,000 Listed race is set to be contested by some promising individuals, with Aidan O'Brien's Bondi Beach out to build on his slightly apologetic debut triumph over his stable-mate Bantry Bay at the track last month. Emmet McNamara falls in for that plum mount, with the trainer's teenage son Donnacha booked for the frustrating Cradle Mountain.

Winning fillies Blue Paraiba, Whitehaven Bay and Wooden Heart are also among the seven runners, with Jim Bolger's maiden Morning Mix also engaged. If Radanpour continues to progress, though, he is going to be very hard to beat under Pat Smullen.

A son of Sea The Stars, the Aga Khan-owned colt has impressed with his attitude in both of his starts this year, latterly knuckling down well to draw seven lengths clear in a middling conditions race over this 12-furlong trip at Gowran Park. That was on deep ground and he will be racing on quick conditions for a first time here, but he might well improve for that.

If he does, then he should take a bit of stopping, so he appeals as nap material now.

The same duo get the nod to take the mile maiden with Khalid Abdullah's Manitobian. This is an open-looking affair, with John Oxx's Frozen Lake, Mick Halford's Monolight and Willie McCreery's B Cosmos all having shown potential. However, Manitobian might be the pick of the lot.

A son of Selkirk, he didn't entirely convince for pressure on his track bow at Roscommon. In his defence, the extended 10-furlong trip on soft ground might not have suited, so he warrants the benefit of the doubt now that he drops back in trip on quicker ground.

The card's €52,000 feature is the Seamus and Rosemary McGrath Saval Beg Stakes. Since 2010, Fame And Glory, Midnight Soprano, Pale Mimosa and Missunited have won the Listed event, and this year's edition might fall a little short in comparison.

Ballydoyle's Kingfisher, a pace-maker last year, and Andy Oliver's game handicapper Panama Hat are the top-rated duo, but a chance is taken on Toe The Line becoming the fourth mare in succession to prevail.

John Kiely's versatile daughter of Shantou didn't run her race at Navan, but that was a rare aberration for an otherwise consistent performer. She progressed throughout last year to win a handicap here and a Listed race at the Curragh, before running well to be third on her Cork return.

For whatever reason, she didn't turn up at Navan, but she ought to go close here if she runs to the full of her capabilities under Kevin Manning.

Over jumps at Downpatrick, another of Shantou's offspring, Shantou Flyer, is fancied in the beginners' chase. Colin Bowe's charge faces stern opposition from Edeymi and Archie Meade, but he took kindly to this job when second to Flaming Dawn at Limerick.

A 130-rated hurdler, Barry O'Neill's mount would have been as good as any of these over the smaller obstacles, so he might prove a formidable opponent now. As ever, Gordon Elliott is well represented, and Ultimate Horseman should get his day off to a winning start for Bryan Cooper in the maiden hurdle.

Irish Independent