herald

Friday 9 December 2016

Explosive Bolger

Pleascach gave trainer Jim Bolger a second Tattersalls Irish 1,000 Guineas success and just like his previous winner Finsceal Beo, Pleascach looks like a filly we could be hearing a lot more about over the coming season.

Sent off the 11/2 second favourite behind runner-up Found, Pleascach's slight drift to the left in the shadows of the post brought about a stewards' enquiry, although the result was never in doubt and it could be at the Curragh for the 150th running of the Irish Derby where we see Pleascach following her supplementary for the race last week.

"She has a nice bit of toe but she is not a miler and to win a Guineas is a bonus," said Bolger afterwards.

Pleascach was settled in third with her two stable companions Mainicin and Steip Amach dictating the early pace and although it was only the plan for one of them to be there the objective was achieved.

"She is a relentless galloper with a turn of foot and the plan was to make it into a strongly run race and she had to dig deep. I would love to run her in the Irish Derby and then the Irish Oaks and the Derby would be her next race."

Aside from just training the winner, translated as 'Explosive' in Irish, who was ridden by his forever dependable comrade, son-in-law and stable jockey Kevin Manning, Pleascach also ran in the colours of his wife Jackie and Bolger also bred the winner, her sire, her dam and the dam of the sire in an operation he described as "a weekend job" on Saturday.

Bolger admitted afterwards that his decision to give Pleascach a late entry in the Irish Derby was as much about the potential wide open nature of the 1m4f Classic and there was further evidence to back that up in yesterday's Gallinule Stakes when potential Ballydoyle Epsom candidate Giovanni Canaletto went down to the rapidly improving filly Curvy, a result which looks to have also ruled Giovanni Canaletto out of the Epsom Derby.

Curvy has progressed from a mark of 72 at the start of the season and winning trainer David Wachman explained; "She just came into her own as a three-year-old.

"She ran quite well as a two-year-old but she was just a big, weak filly, and we came here to find out if she was up to it and she won snug enough at the end because she wouldn't do a whole lot in front.

"The Ribblesdale could be an option and we'll talk to the guys but she is entitled to anywhere after that and there's plenty of races for her."

Yesterday's other Group One winner was the admirable Al Kazeem who was winning the Tattersalls Gold Cup for a second time in three-years for trainer Roger Charlton.

In a race dominated in the betting by British trained horses, Fascinating Rock ran a blinder for Dermot Weld but Charlton was naturally full of praise for his stable star.

"He's an amazing horse," said the trainer. "He looked amazing, he's brave and he has class - everything you want in a racehorse."

Now retained jockey to one of the most powerful racing operations in Godolphin, Al Kazeem was one of the horses that helped jockey James Doyle get to the very top of a profession that he nearly left and he was winning the Tattersalls Gold Cup for a third year in a row following his win aboard Noble Mission last season.

"James felt that he was better than ever which is almost unbelievable. He's a great credit to everyone at home and to have him to run in these Group One races... this is my proudest moment."

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