Qewy bids to enhance John Oxx’s excellent record as he lines up in the Listed Lenebane Stakes at Roscommon tomorrow evening.
Oxx has saddled four of the last five winners of the 12-furlong heat and Qewy will be taking a step up in both class and distance after shedding his maiden tag over a mile and a quarter at Navan last month.
Previously a well-beaten third behind subsequent Irish Derby hero Trading Leather on the final of his two juvenile starts last term, Oxx feels this event provides an excellent opportunity to take another step up the ladder.
“We are encouraged enough to move him up in trip, although we are going into the unknown a bit. He’s a nice horse. He won his maiden but has to step up now in Listed company,” he said.
“Good fast ground should suit him. He’s a big horse and is happy with an ease, so we’ll have to see if he as happy on good to firm ground. He’s been pleasing us in his work at home. Mick Kinane has ridden Qewy a bit in his work. We have good work riders.
“This race has been very lucky for us. We’ve hit it right. It’s a useful race being a Listed one over a mile and a half and at a good time of the year. You don’t meet horses that are going for the Leopardstown staying races.”
Aidan O’Brien interrupted Oxx’s winning run when sending out My Quest For Peace to victory in 2011 and he relies on El Salvador this time.
Mick Halford is another previous winner of the race and Opera Gloves is his contender this time around.
Michael Winters’ admirable mare Missunited takes her chance along with The Giving Tree, Bunairgead, Love And Cherish and Majenta.
The nine-strong line-up is completed by Noel Meade’s Il Fenomeno, an Italian Group Three winner in 2010 whose has been plying his trade over hurdles and fences in recent seasons.