At Gowran Park last Sunday the best wine was kept ’til last where Ming scored for Joseph O’Brien.
With Jim Bolger’s Strike For Freedom a non runner (off feed) only three faced the starter.
Chiana Luna, who had finished out the back in the Irish 1,000 Guineas a few weeks before, was a hot 1/2 jolly.
Yet the smart money all day had been for Ming who was hammered into 13/8 in the offices.
Despite that – and possibly because of liabilities running on to the odds on favourite – Ming opened up at 5/2 in the ring and was an easy to back 9/4 shot at the off.
The early birds in the offices knew their stuff however as Joseph’s gelding took over entering the straight and won comfortably under Seamie Heffernan.
He had been an impressive debut winner over ten furlongs at Dundalk but flopped in a Group 3 at The Curragh.
Perhaps that was a reaction to the unkindest cut of all as it was his first run after been gelded.
Yet he left that Headquarters disappointment well behind now at this lovely south Kilkenny woodlands track.
Joseph said: “He ran too free the last day at The Curragh but settled well today and quickened up nicely.”
We think he’s a nice horse. We will look for another conditions race, but he’s well entitled to step up to Group or Listed company” he added.
Heffernan was completing a double as earlier he was on target for Ballydoyle on Curly, whose returned odds of 7/2 must have delighted off course supporters.
Quite how she was that price is a mystery, there was even some “fours” in the ring, but she won as she pleased and will most assuredly go on better things.
Runner up Park Bloom has been a work in progress for local handler Jim Bolger but she’s getting there though she will need ten furlongs at least to really shine.
Jessica Harrington was basking in both the sunshine and the warm afterglow of Alpha Centauri’s blistering Royal Ascot run two days before.
And to add to the celebrations St Brelades Bay – a bit of a character and clearly a great favourite around the stable – won on what was obviously one of his going days.
This six furlong specialist, a 5/1 chance here, won for the first time now over seven and Jessica said “I never really know when he’s going to do it.”
“He’s in great order and it suited him the way the race was run, with horses coming back to him.”
Declan’s Irish Racing Service continues in red hot form, including FOUR OUT OF FOUR at Down Royal last Saturday – Change Of Velocity 11/2 (won 7/2); Kalaxana 7/2 (w 6/4); Soffia 3/1 and Kafu 11/4 (w 11/8).
And, after Settle For Bay at Royal Ascot the previous week, he had another 16/1 winner now in Draycott Place, and also tipped Curly 7/2; Secret Thoughts 5/2 (w 7/4); Ruler Of France 7/4; Mayaadeen 6/5; Ravenhill 6/5 (w evens) and Robin Des Foret 11/10 (w 4/7).
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