Tuesday 24 April 2018

O'Brien to warm up for US raid with a winner

Halford scored recently with Claregate Street. Picture credit: Paul Mohan / Sportsfile
Halford scored recently with Claregate Street. Picture credit: Paul Mohan / Sportsfile

Johnny Ward

Aidan O'Brien has Homesman and Whitecliffsofdover in tonight's Belmont Derby and can strike beforehand in Naas' J F Dunne Insurances Since 1977 Race with Rostropovic.

The son of Frankel landed a gamble at Gowran, in spite of patent greenness, and was since scratched prior to a Group race. Perhaps he can take the step up to edge two other promising maiden winners in Camelback and Strike For Freedom.

The stable's Seahenge, by Scat Daddy, could take an opening maiden in which tentative preference is for Ger Lyons' potentially smart My Mystique.

A talking horse is Goldrush in the iBus Plc Irish EBF Fillies Maiden - she was bought for the astonishing sum of €1.7m as a yearling by the China Horse Club - but has no simple task in beating the pacy Dayereh, trained by Michael Halford.

Halford scored recently with Claregate Street, which has claims in a trappy Irish Risk Management Centre Handicap, but Tony Martin may strike here with The Invisible Dog.

Shore Step is a shot in the dark in the J F Dunne Insurances Bus & Coach Insurance Apprentice Handicap for John Murtagh. Another top weight, Miss Power, looks progressive enough to defy that for Eddie Lynam in the Parliament Premium Finance Irish EBF Fillies Handicap.

Less Of That can better a fine season for John Feane in the nightcap, shortly before which Bellewstown commences its final day of the July Festival.

The nap selection near Meath's slither of coastline is the Enda Bolger-trained Up For Discussion in the Sean Rothwell Construction Handicap Hurdle. This one is unexposed and seemed to be cantering when falling late on at Roscommon.

A classy field befits a purse of €30,000 in the Fast Shipping Bellewstown Handicap Hurdle. Touched off here on the Flat on Thursday, King's Wharf can go one better for Gavin Cromwell.

The betting will tell plenty in the Tierney Kitchens Balbriggan Maiden Hurdle, in which the strong-travelling Herminio is aiming for an opening Irish win, but Joseph O'Brien's Aeglos should have his measure if the market signals are encouraging.

Also in JP McManus' silks, Steamboat Quay can strike for Gordon Elliott in the Adare Manor Opportunity Handicap Hurdle. Tigris River can also score for the legendary owner in the opener, though this may be something of a Galway Hurdle prep for one or two of these.

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