THERE was an Irish 1-2-3 in the classic trial at Sandown, which must surely augur well for the season ahead.
Under a brilliant ride from Chris Hayes, Patrick Prendergast's Sugar Boy (4/1) fought off Aidan O'Brien's Eye Of The Storm and a late rally from David Wachman's Derby hope Galileo Rock.
The junior member of the famous training dynasty was taking a leaf out of the book of his grandfather Paddy, who was a pioneer at bringing horses across for big English races.
This was both Prendergast and Hayes' first try at Sandown and Sugar Boy did well, losing his lead to 2/1 favourite Eye of The Storm but steaming past again to earn Group Three honours by a head.
Sugar Boy had been beaten by O'Brien's live Epsom candidate Battle Of Marengo in the recent Ballysax Stakes, and the trainer said: "He'll go for the Irish Derby and he could go straight there. If he needed another run, his only option is the Nijinsky Stakes at Leopardstown. Hopefully, later on, he could come back over here for the English St Leger."
Hayes, who will be notified of the dates for a four-day whip ban from the race, said: "I thought I'd gone quick enough in the ground. But looking at how he finished, I could have gone a bit quicker."