O'Meara eyes Matron Stakes raid with Ascot heroine Maria
Surprise Royal Ascot winner Amazing Maria heads 38 entries for the Group 1 Coolmore Fastnet Rock Matron Stakes which will be one of the highlights on the opening day of Longines Irish Champions Weekend at Leopardstown on September 12.
Trained by Cork native David O'Meara in England, Amazing Maria captured the Duke Of Cambridge Stakes by getting the better of Clive Brittain's Rizeena, which last year chased home local heroine Fiesolana in the one-mile feature.
Cursory Glance, which won the Group 1 Moyglare Stud Stakes at the Curragh on Irish Champions Weekend last September, could fly the flag for Roger Varian, although the daughter of Distorted Humor is yet to make her seasonal debut.
There are three entries from France, including the French 1,000 Guineas winner Ervedya, trained by Jean-Claude Rouget, which edged out Aidan O'Brien's Found and Lucida to win the Group 1 Coronation Stakes at Royal Ascot.
David Wachman's 1,000 Guineas heroine Legatissimo heads a strong home team. Along with Found, Together Forever, Kissed By Angels, the unbeaten Fluff and Words look best of O'Brien's entries, while Lucida is one of four Jim Bolger hopefuls.
Fiesolana gave trainer Willie McCreery his first Group 1 victory when winning the race last year and he has entered Devonshire.