Wednesday 27 March 2019

Zorion makes his mark for Bolger team

Trainer Aidan O'Brien. Photo: PA
Trainer Aidan O'Brien. Photo: PA

Thomas Kelly

Godolphin's royal blue silks, memorably carried to victory by Masar in last week's Epsom Derby, were to the fore again at Leopardstown last night when Jim Bolger's Zorion captured the Listed Glencairn Stakes.

The son of Smart Strike was driven to victory by Kevin Manning and the rider edged out Seamie Heffernan on Allegio in a desperately tight finish to the mile event with Zorion getting the verdict by a head from his Denis Hogan-trained rival.

"I always felt he was up to this grade and I'm not sure where he'll go next," commented Bolger afterwards, "but hopefully we will find something for him at the Derby meeting in the Curragh."

Bolger had made what looked a bold move to run in the contest on the back of the four-year-old's ninth place in a six-furlong handicap at the Curragh last month, but it was one that paid off as he collared the gallant Allegio which had enjoyed himself in front from the off.

Mamba Noire, a classy juvenile last year, ran with promise on her reappearance - and first try at the trip - for the Classic-winning combination of Ken Condon and Shane Foley.

Bolger added of the 100/30 winner: "Six furlongs was too short (last time). He showed plenty of boot around here over seven and I saw a nice race in the Curragh over six, but it didn't work."

Giuseppe Garibaldi claimed his second victory in the space of a week with an authoritative display in the King George V Cup.

Aidan O'Brien's charge was no match for the reopposing Carlo Biraghi at the Curragh last month, but impressed at Navan last Saturday and the pair were 7/4 joint-favourites for the rematch in this Listed contest. The winner's stablemate Lucius Tiberius disputed the early running along with Fozzy Stack's Carlo Biraghi, but the latter dropped away tamely early in the straight.

Giuseppe Garibaldi soon loomed up ominously and kicked clear for a comfortable two-and-a-half-length success under the trainer's son Donnacha, collecting his second win of the evening after Bond Street (10/11) claimed the earlier Leopardstown Golf Centre Rated Race for the O'Brien combination.

The Bolger-trained Cimeara stayed on well to beat Lucius Tiberius to the runner-up spot.

The winning rider said: "They seemed to go a nice even gallop and I got a grand position. He's a bit awkward and still a bit babyish, but is learning and has plenty of ability. He stays well. I liked him last year and I thought he'd get off the mark sooner this year.

"You could see him running in a Queen's Vase or a King Edward VII Stakes (at Royal Ascot). He's probably more a Queen's Vase type, but I'll leave that up to Dad."

Irish Independent

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