High-class Abbey difficult to oppose

THE high-class St Nicholas Abbey is difficult to oppose in the Group 3 High Chaparral EBF Mooresbridge Stakes at the Curragh this afternoon.

Successful at the Breeders’ Cup at Churchill Downs in early November, he made an excellent reappearance at Meydan towards the end of March.

St Nicholas Abbey finished with a flourish when beaten a quarter of a length into second by Cirrus Des Aigles and that represents particularly decent form. Cirrus Des Aigles subsequently won the Group 1 Prix de Ganay at Longchamp.

The progressive Sharestan is a fascinating challenger, but has 11lbs to find with St Nicholas Abbey and that’s a tall order for the relatively inexperienced four-year-old.

John Oxx trains Sharestan and his Takar is the nap choice in the Listed Dylan Thomas EBF Tetrarch Stakes.

The Oratorio colt created a big impression on the second of his two outings as a juvenile when taking a maiden at Leopardstown by eight lengths.

Jim Bolger’s Move to strike, a promising third behind Aidan O’Brien’s hot-pot, Forester, at Leopardstown is the one to beat in the Alfred Nobel EBF Maiden.

Kevin Prendergast’s Qasser, who tired in the closing stages when third to to Strada Colorato at Naas, can surely improve for that and go close in the P G Duffy And Sons Citroen Maiden.

A decent Bumper concludes the programme, with the nod falling on Willie Mullins’ Pique Sous, third behind stable companion, Champagene Fever, at Cheltenham.

Champagne Fever boosted the form at the recent Punchestown festival, while the sixth at Cheltenham, The New One, scored at Aintree next time.

At Down Royal Back To Balloo has to get the nod in the Dark Horse Café And Wine Bar Maiden Hurdle, having chased home Simon Gray at Fairyhouse. The third then, He’s Our Man, scored at Limerick on Saturday.

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