"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
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
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
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
"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
"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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