Bobby Zen

No sooner is the Cheltenham Festival wound up than the Flat Turf season begins at The Curragh on Monday, leaving no time to draw breath. Offering the ultimate contrast to the recent jumping spectacles is the opening five-furlong Castle Star And Alkumait At Capital Stud Irish EBF Maiden for 2-year-olds, where a clutch of the entries are by the first-season sires Sergei Prokofiev, Verbal Dexterity (Ire), Far Above (Ire) and Arizona (Ire). It is Whitsbury Manor Stud’s resident Sergei Prokofiev who could have the favourite in the Adrian Murray-trained colt Arizona Blaze (GB), sporting the silks of AMO Racing Limited and Giselle De Aguiar, but this is a race that Jim Bolger likes to make an early statement in and it is significant that he saddles Verbal Dexterity’s son Monotone (Ire) in his colours. A half-brother to his former TDN Rising Star and G1 Irish 2000 Guineas fourth Wexford Native (Ire) (Teofilo {Ire}), it would be no surprise to see him emulate Dawn Approach (Ire), who gave his sire New Approach (Ire) his first winner in this back in 2012.

Ballydoyle roll out the first of their turf runners in the well-tried Old Faithful (Fr) (Siyouni {Fr}) in the seven-furlong maiden for 3-year-old colts and geldings and the filly Mayfair (Ire) (Justify) in the fillies’ version. A daughter of the G1 Cheveley Park S. winner Clemmie (Ire) (Galileo {Ire}), she is chosen to represent the yard in the maiden won three years ago by the subsequent G1 Prix de Diane heroine Joan Of Arc (Ire) (Galileo {Ire}), so there could be a hint there. In the G3 Lodge Park Stud Irish EBF Park Express S., the Rosegreen establishment puts forward the G3 Newtownanner Stud Irish EBF S. runner-up Brilliant (Ire) (Gleneagles {Ire}) and the Galway maiden scorer Everlasting (Ire) (Kingman {GB}), both entered in the 1000 Guineas, while there is a G1 Irish Oaks entry involved in Gerard Kervick’s Gowran Park winner Alpheratz (Ire) (Phoenix Of Spain {Ire}) from the Joseph Murphy stable. The intrigue begins again.

The post The Curragh Welcomes Back the Flat appeared first on TDN | Thoroughbred Daily News | Horse Racing News, Results and Video | Thoroughbred Breeding and Auctions.

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