Thursday 22 February 2018

Progressive Rose can bloom in conditions that suit

Richard Forristal

Richard Forristal

Royal Ascot winner Lolly For Dolly is the star attraction in a highly competitive renewal of the Fairy Bridge Stakes at Tipperary this evening.

Thirteen go to post for the Irish Stallion Farms EBF-sponsored Listed race, with the Tommy Stack-trained filly one of three older horses tackling a smart Classic generation delegation.

Alanza and Wild Wind, first and second at Cork last time, both line out and it will be fascinating to see how Alanza fares over seven furlongs. Twice placed over six, John Oxx's charge benefited greatly from the step up to a mile at Cork.

One that disappointed then was Claiomh Solais, which also re-opposes now, while Hooray, a Group One winner at two, makes the journey from Mark Prescott's English stable.

With seven furlongs on fast ground possibly not quite a sufficient test for Lolly For Dolly, Rose Bonheur might be the one to trump them all.

Strictly on form, Kevin Prendergast's daughter of Danehill Dancer has a bit to find, but she has been progressive in winning four times between five and seven furlongs this term.

On her most recent start over six at Fairyhouse, she had Katla and Rock Jock, both Listed winners since, behind her in second and third.

Given that she receives nine pounds from Lolly For Dolly, which is rated just five pounds superior, Rose Bonheur could take advantage in conditions that she is effective on.

Another useful three-year-old filly on duty at the Limerick Junction venue is Jim Bolger's Teo's Sister.

Having impressed on her debut at Leopardstown before ruining her chance by pulling too hard at Naas subsequently, this full-sister to the once classy juvenile Teofilo takes on six experienced rivals in the Mocklershill Stables Race.

Teo's Sister could be up against it if the likes of Northern Rocked and Bay Knight perform to their best, but it may be worth giving her the benefit of the doubt for now, receiving weight all round.

Requisition can continue the rich vein of form of Ballydoyle's two-year-olds in the Camus Park Stud maiden.

Third on his Leopardstown debut to the promising Learn, the Invincible Spirit colt should strip fitter here.

Meanwhile, Pozyc is taken to land the nap selection on the second day of the Bellewstown August Festival.

A winner on the Flat at Galway, Willie Mullins' five-year-old paid the price for an untimely stumble at Tramore on Sunday. He should make amends now. Also at the Crockafotha track, the jockeys' line-up for a 'legends' race to raise funds for the building of an Arkle statue in Ashbourne.

Retirees Charlie Swan, Conor O'Dwyer, Adrian Maguire, Jason Titley and Norman Williamson all feature, but are the embodiment of youth alongside this year's Irish Grand National-winning handler Arthur Moore.

If riding skills count for anything, then one of these five will surely deliver, with Williamson and O'Dwyer two of the more likely candidates on Priors Gold and Bullock Harbour.

However, based on equine performances, Donatis Comet, partnered by 1979 champion jumps jockey Joe Byrne, sets the standard.

Irish Independent

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