Classic Clues aplenty at Leopardstown as Madhmoon makes seasonal debut


Friday, April 05, 2019
BLS_PR

"Madhmoon is ready to get started. He has been to Naas and we've our own grass gallop ourselves so he has done plenty. We've had no hold up with him and everything is good." - Kevin Prendergast.

Kevin Prendergast’s Madhmoon, who proved to be one of the most exciting juveniles in Ireland last season, will face seven rivals in the Listed Ballylinch Stud 'Red Rocks' 2,000 Guineas Trial at Leopardstown on Saturday. 

A Group 2 winner at Irish Champions Weekend last year, Madhmoon is two from two at Leopardstown but will meet with stiff opposition from the Aidan O'Brien-trained trio of Never No More, San Andreas and The Irish Rover. 

Speaking earlier this week Prendergast commented: "Madhmoon is ready to get started. He has been to Naas and we've our own grass gallop ourselves so he has done plenty. We've had no hold up with him and everything is good."

The highly rated Could Be King will make his first start for trainer John Oxx in the 2,000 Guineas Trial having been one of the horses to switch to the Classic winning trainer following the retirement of Patrick Prendergast last winter. 

Trainer Sheila Lavery is represented in both Guineas Trial's at Leopardstown on Saturday and is hopeful that an ease in the ground may suit Breaking Story who is her representative in the colts trial.

"I'm very happy with Breaking Story and he will handle the ground fine. We'll know an awful lot more tomorrow at what level he is at but he is fit and well and ready to run," Lavery reported. 

Copia Verborum for Jim Bolger and the German 2,000 Guineas entry Wargrave complete the line up for the €50,000 contest. 

Joseph O'Brien's Group 1 winning filly Iridessa heads the field for the Ballylinch Stud 'Priory Belle' 1,000 Guineas Trial on the card. 

O'Brien's Fillies' Mile winner drops back in trip for her first engagement of the season and will be ridden by champion jockey Donnacha O'Brien. The trainer is also represented in the race by Elleanthus and Rainbow Moonstone, while his father, Aidan, runs Fire Fly, Happen, I Can Remember You, Secret Thoughts and Zagitova. 

Shelia Lavery's Group 1 runner-up Lady Kaya will lead the opposition and the Meath-based trainer is looking forward to getting the daughter of Dandy Man started. 

"Lady Kaya is very fresh and ready to start. I've been very happy with her progress throughout the winter and this race at Leopardstown was always a natural starting point for her. She is very well and ready to run but I would be slightly concerned about how she will handle the ground. It is more of a worry for Lady Kaya than it would be for Breaking Story but I'm keen to get a run into her so she'll take her chance and we'll find out more about her," Lavery said.

Smart Curragh maiden winner Viadera will line up for trainer Ger Lyons who won the race last year with Who's Steph while course and distance winner Operatic Export is Jim Bolger's sole runner in the race. 

Trainer Dermot Weld enjoyed a fine start to Leopardstown's Flat season on Wednesday when saddling four winners on the card and he is looking forward to unleashing Tankerville in the P.W McGrath Memorial Ballysax Stakes. 

"This is a big step up for Tankerville. He is a strong, big colt but he has got to step up from winning a Median Auction Maiden at Gowran Park to taking on some of the potentially best three-year-olds in Europe in the Ballysax Stakes," said Weld.

"I'm very happy with the horse and he's very well. The horses are running very well at the moment and the Ballysax is a race that means a lot. My latest winner in the race was Harzand who went on to win the English and Irish Derby for me. It is a race that comes very early in the season but it always takes a very good horse to win it and it tells you very quickly where you stand."

A field of six will go to post for the Group 3 contest with Aidan O'Brien's Prix Jean-Luc Lagardere runner-up Broome topping the official ratings. The champion trainer also runs Sovereign and Criterium de Saint-Cloud runner-up Sydney Opera House.

The Eyrefield Stakes winner Guaranteed and Leopardstown maiden winner Pythion complete the field. 

Ballylinch Stud continues their sponsorship of the 2,000 Guineas Trial Stakes for a second year and their long-standing relationship with the 1,000 Guineas Trial Stakes at Leopardstown which have both played host to a large number of subsequent Group 1 winners in recent years. 

The first on a seven-race card on Saturday is due off at 1.40pm and live coverage of the Grand National meeting from Aintree will be shown throughout the enclosures at Leopardstown. Further details can be found at www.leopardstown.com

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