Monday 22 January 2018

Lundy set for better things after Leopardstown strike


Lundy went one better than on debut when running out an impressive winner of the Irish Stallion Farms European Breeders Fund Auction Maiden at Leopardstown.

The Fastnet Rock colt, who holds an entry in the Group One Phoenix Stakes, had made a fine introduction at Dundalk last month when second to highly-regarded stablemate Caravaggio.

Sent off the 6-5 favourite, he was always handy under Donnacha O'Brien and quickened up smartly a furlong and a half out, putting the race to bed.

Dermot Weld's Dapper Man and the Ger Lyons-trained Medicine Jack made pleasing debuts in second and third, but the Aidan O'Brien-trained winner scored by three lengths.

There was a huge gamble which went astray on Darren Bunyan's Hit The Bid, backed from 25-1 overnight into 4-1 but after showing up early he faded close home.

Joseph O'Brien, who effectively trains the winner, said from the family's Piltown base: "He's always worked well and showed plenty of pace. As he stepped up his work he got better. He ran well behind Caravaggio and finished out his race well.

"The Coventry, Windsor Castle and Norfolk Stakes are options and if you put a gun to my head now I would probably say the Coventry.

"Today was six furlongs and that is probably his trip as there is plenty of pace in him.

"He could go for the Marble Hill or a Listed race at Naas, we would look at in between as that is the natural progression as there are no other real races for him."

Cole Porter hit the right note for O'Brien and Ryan Moore in the Bulmers Live At Leopardstown Festival Maiden.

The Galileo colt showed ability in three runs as a juvenile and was given a straightforward ride by Moore, kicking clear and having enough in the tank to hold Radar O'Reilly by half a length.

O'Brien said of the 4-6 favourite: "Ryan said he stays well and we always thought he would like a bit of nice ground."

Dont Bother Me (14-1) made every post a winning one in the John R Fitzpatrick Agricultural Contractor Handicap.

The six-year-old had not shown a great deal since returning to the Niall Moran stable but stepped forward from last week's Sligo comeback and saw off Plough Boy by two and a quarter lengths.

Moran said: "He was highly tried, he ran in the Guineas and led until two furlongs out in the Jersey. He was sent to England and came back a train-wreck. It's taken a long time to get him back right. He was only half the horse last year, and has come back right this year.

"He may go to the Curragh on Guineas weekend. We'll see how he is in the morning."

Intisari denied John Oxx his first winner of the season in the Fitzpatrick Gallagher McEvoy Solicitors Handicap.

The Oxx-trained Xebec dictated terms to suit himself and appeared to have stolen a winning march entering the final furlong, only to be reeled in by Lyons' top-weight Intisari (14-1), who got the verdict in a photo.

Lyons said: "He's still very immature mentally, and physically is still growing. I told Colin (Keane) to take your time and see what happens. I didn't expect him to win with 9st 12lb.

"The penny is taking a long time to drop, but he's a good servant and has won three now. I'm sure he'll have to step up into Listed races soon."

Press Association

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