Friday 18 January 2019

Great' Option next for bay

Cheltenham visit on cards for McConnell's Orgilgo

A return to Cheltenham could be next on the agenda for John McConnell's Fred Winter third Orgilgo Bay who was an impressive winner of the Lartigue Hurdle at the Listowel Harvest Festival last week.

McConnell's four-year-old was third behind Hawk High and Katgary at the Cheltenham Festival and has been a model of consistency since winning twice and placed in his four other outings.

The Bellewstown-based trainer said: "He's come out of Listowel well and took the race fine.


"He won well, but it was against his own age group. It was a very nice race to win and the style he did it in was great. Hopefully, he can keep improving. He was put up 8lb for winning at Listowel, which seems about right."

McConnell is looking towards the Greatwood Hurdle next for the son of Lawman before he is given a break in the depth of the winter months.

"The Greatwood at Cheltenham in November is an obvious race he could go for, but we might even go for something a little less ambitious and then let him off and bring him back for the spring.

"We have no immediate specific plans yet. There are a number of handicap hurdles to look at before Christmas. He will probably have one more run and have a break then."

McConnell admitted: "We thought he wanted soft ground when he was a baby but as he's got older he seems to handle better ground really well, and we'd nearly be staying away from soft ground at this point.

"He is a beautiful mover so he does handle top of the ground very well, and he's probably able to jump out of quick ground even better than soft."


Meanwhile, Aidan O'Brien is keeping an eye on the weather before firming up plans for the Curragh at the weekend.

O'Brien has a number of entries in the Group Two Beresford Stakes, including Ol' Man River who impressed when making a winning debut at the end of last month.

Ol' Man River also holds an entry for the Royal Lodge Stakes at Newmarket on Saturday also, but that looks unlikely, and O'Brien commented: "The ground would be crucial for Ol' Man River as he needs it to stay good. We will wait and see what the weather does over the next few days and make a final decision on Friday morning."

Trainer Roger Varian has not ruled out running Moyglare Stud winner Cursory Glance again this season after admitting she came out of her Curragh success well.

"We haven't made our mind up what we'll do yet. She came out of the Moyglare so well we have the option of running her again if we want."

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