It really is the calm before the storm in Irish racing this weekend.
A modest card at Wexford this afternoon is the only action over the next two days and then it will be a case of full steam ahead with the Galway festival starting on Monday.
It is obviously important that the Galway tank is topped up at Wexford and Michael Halford’s Sindarban is fancied to do just that in the Littlewoods Ireland Ladies’ Day Maiden.
The son of Teofilo was a little unlucky not to make a winning debut over ten furlongs at Navan 15 days ago.
Shane Foley seemed to find all the trouble that was going up the long straight, with the selection struggling to get a clear run.
By the time Sindarban had been extricated out of an unfavourable pocket or two, the winner, The Big Cat, had flown.
Sindarban was doing all of his best work at the end, but was never going to reel in The Big Cat, and was a length and a quarter adrift at the line.
He had, arguably, his biggest danger now, Hurricane Volta, who had two previous runs under his belt, three parts of a length behind in third and can confirm those placings, especially with another furlong and a half to travel.
Tommy Stack’s Celestial Fable looks the answer to the first, the Irish Stallion Farms’ EBF Fillies Maiden.
She didn’t show a great deal in her opening two outings, but seemed to very much benefit from a break when reappearing at Killarney 11 days ago.
The daughter of Intense Focus went off a 33-1 shot, but performed far better than her odds suggested she would.
Driven along at the back early in the straight, Celestial Fable stayed on strongly in the closing stages to be beaten half a length and a neck into third behind Blackstone and Elusive Laurence.
Only three are set to face the starter in the Amanda Brunker Judge’s Littlewoods Ireland Ladies’ Day Rated Race and one of them, Princess Tamay, was due to run at Down Royal last night.
The vote goes to Bogardus, who was beaten half a length into second by the other horse in this contest, Calorie, at Dundalk last time.
Bogardus renews rivalry on 8lbs better terms, as well as Gary Halpin’s 7lbs claim, so going with him is a no-brainer.
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