Sport Horse Racing

Tuesday 20 February 2018

Lynam eyes Haydock after Power surge

Thomas Kelly

Slade Power could be bound for the Betfred Sprint Cup at Haydock after producing a gritty display in testing conditions to lift the Belgrave Stakes at Fairyhouse.

Edward Lynam's progressive young sprinter had won a Listed contest at the Merseyside track on his previous start and followed up in a similar contest nearer home. The three-year-old got the better of the much more experienced five-year-old Arctic to land the spoils in determined fashion.

Wayne Lordan produced Slade Power towards the centre of the course to make his challenge and the 11/4 shot responded gamely to win by half a length with Santo Padre third.

Lynam said: "He has a bit of class about him. I think he'll be very good. I didn't know his ground and I had to find out. I think he handled it. Wayne said he wasn't in love with the ground. In nine months he could be very good."

Owner David Power said: "He'll have a little break and could go for the Betfred Sprint Cup at Haydock. I think he would prefer good ground."

Lordan completed a double on Colour Of Love for Willie McCreery in the six-furlong handicap, the four-year-old filly just holding Invincible Ridge by a nose.

"She is a tough little devil. She needs the splits and six furlongs is her ideal trip," McCreery said. "She ran a blinder at the Curragh last time out. We might have a look at a Listed fillies' race in Naas for her now, but we will see what the handicapper does. She needs blinkers as she likes looking at the crowd."

Fresh from Saturday night's Group One success in Longchamp, Aidan O'Brien and his jockey son Joseph enjoyed a treble with Parliament Square, Warwick Avenue and Chicago. Warwick Avenue kept Blue Corner at bay by a head after making all the running in the conditions race over 10 furlongs.

The winning rider said: "He is improving with every run and he is a horse with a great attitude."

Parliament Square, fifth in the Windsor Castle Stakes at Royal Ascot, landed the odds to open his account at the fourth attempt in the opening juvenile maiden. "He's improving with racing and hopefully he'll keep going. He'll have no problem stepping up to Listed or Group company," said O'Brien Jnr.

Chicago led just inside the final furlong to run out a cosy winner of the closing 12-furlong handicap. The O'Brien team went close to a four-timer when Unanimous had to play second fiddle to the Pat Smullen-ridden Encrypted Message in the seven-furlong maiden.

"He had the form to win that and I thought he would win it," said winning trainer Dermot Weld. "He is consistent, that's his level and Pat gave him a good, strong ride. On testing ground you want a horse that gets further than seven furlongs and he does."

At Sligo, the day's featured novice hurdle went to the Jerry Cosgrave-trained Mount Colah which justified strong support under amateur rider Noel McParlan. Returned at just 5/2 having opened at 7/2, the son of Beneficial took up the lead at the second flight, but he jumped left at the last before staying on well to win from Audrelles Lad.

"He tanks along all the time in front and he needs to switch off a bit. Galway is next up for him, ground permitting," said the Co Down-based Cosgrave.

Willie Mullins' winning spree continued as the champion trainer teamed up with Ruby Walsh to land the mares maiden hurdle with Zuzka.

Having finished a promising third at Gowran Park on her hurdles debut, the five-year-old was sent off 4/9 favourite and gave supporters few worries as she cruised to a comfortable success.

Irish Independent

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