Tuesday 16 January 2018

Levey has definite chance to rule roost aboard Emperor

Marine Commando (L) edges out Petronius Maximus in Ascot's finale yesterday. Photo: PA
Marine Commando (L) edges out Petronius Maximus in Ascot's finale yesterday. Photo: PA

Damien McElroy

In action at Royal Ascot yesterday, Sean Levey has a definite chance of partnering a winner for his boss Aidan O'Brien as Emperor Claudius makes a belated return to action at Fairyhouse this evening in the Bobbyjo Bistro Race.

This conditions affair over seven furlongs, which is the richest event on a modest Flat card at the Meath venue, has attracted a mere five starters and their current ratings suggest the finish should be fought out by Levey's mount and Luisant.


A fine money-spinner for James Nash's small team, Luisant has been competing well, if without much reward, in sprints this season and should give another good account of himself under Fran Berry, despite his welter burden.

However, he's rated 2lb inferior to Emperor Claudius, which was a course and distance winner before losing out by a whisker to Big Audio at Royal Ascot a year ago in the Chesham Stakes over seven furlongs on a fast surface.

Levey's useful 5lb claim and the plum inside draw are factors that suggest the son of Giant's Causeway has a golden opportunity to resume on a winning note here.

Local trainer Eddie Lynam, who brings Sinsational back for this opening leg of the Jackpot, could land the races either side of the feature, with Sunday's Cork scorer Iron Major under a mandatory penalty and well-bred newcomer Tweedy.

Successful with Johnny Murtagh up at the Mallow course, Iron Major looks a horse on the upgrade. Shane Foley's claim this time counteracts most of the gelding's 5lb penalty, which could give them a vital edge in quite a competitive race over the likes of John Coleman's Sean Og Coulston, which incurred a 14lb hike from the assessor for an easy Down Royal success.

The Lynam-Berry partnership, which has enjoyed plenty of reward with stable star Duff, have another of the Ryan family's Kilboy Estate horses to look forward to in Tweedy, an Oasis Dream filly that could make a successful debut in the Paddy Barry Graduation Maiden.

Irish Independent

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