Sport Horse Racing

Monday 19 March 2018

Murtagh keeps warning flag flying high to seal double

Johnny Murtagh gave Warning Flag a pillar-to-post ride in last night's feature contest at Dundalk, the Irish Stallion Farms EBF Star Appeal Stakes.

Despite Aidan O'Brien having two runners in the race, Murtagh was riding for David Wachman in the colours of Michael Tabor in the Listed contest.

Park Avenue and Tell The Wind threw down challenges inside the final two furlongs but Warning Flag found more to win by just over a length.

"He found plenty when the other horses came to him," said Wachman. "He's progressing nicely and should be quite a nice horse next year from a mile to 10 furlongs. I'd imagine that will be him for the season."

Earlier, Tradition justified 9/4 favouritism in the Irish Stallion Farms EBF Median Auction Maiden Stakes to give Murtagh and Wachman a double.

"He's a nice horse and has come forward from every run," added Wachman.

"He was probably unlucky in Listowel the last day when he dwelt at the start. He's going to be a better horse next year."

Ger Lyons saddled his mandatory winner at the meeting when Final Recovery took the opening Buy A Racing Post Bonus Yearling Bonus Candidate Nursery Handicap.

Keagan Latham was content to sit just off the pace before kicking on with more than a furlong to run. He ran out a cosy two-length winner.


"The maiden he ran in last time was above average. He's a nice horse but should probably only be having his first run now," said Lyons.

"I told the owner he would win so it's job done."

Tweedy (4/1) still has another target this season after running out a ready winner of the Race under Wayne Lordan.

"She did it well. She'll probably go for a Listed race at Lingfield in late November that Duff won before," said trainer Edward Lynam.

Meanwhile, Henry Cecil did little to dampen the ever-increasing excitement about Frankel ahead of next week's Dubai Dewhurst Stakes.

The multiple champion trainer believes the colt to be as promising as any two-year-old to have passed through his hands in almost 40 years, a comment he first made after he took the Royal Lodge Stakes at Ascot by 10 lengths.

"Frankel seems in great order," said Cecil. "I wanted him to run again down here in the Dewhurst, when the ground is more likely to be good, and I can finish him up earlier than if I ran him in the Racing Post Trophy.

"He's entitled to go there -- I'm not suggesting he is going to win -- but it would be nice if he could go away at the end of the season as a Group One winner," he added of the colt, which is already a short price for next year's 2,000 Guineas.

Irish Independent

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