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Dundalk stages the rescheduled Fillies & Mares Fast Track Qualifier

Fast Track Qualifiers
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05 March 2019

Dundalk stages a rearranged card tomorrow, Wednesday, March 6, after its fixture last Friday was abandoned following the second race.

 

Group One performer I Can Fly (Aidan O'Brien/Ryan Moore) returns to racing in the €26,000 Get A Run For Your Money With BetVictor Fillies Race (6.45pm, four runners), also a Fast-Track Qualifier for the £150,000 Ladbrokes Fillies & Mares' Championship.

 

I Can Fly, trained Aidan O'Brien and owned by a Coolmore Partnership, posted some top-class efforts on turf last year, most notably over a mile when easily capturing the G2 Boomerang Stakes at Leopardstown in September and only being beaten a neck by Roaring Lion, the 2018 Cartier Horse of the Year, in the G1 Queen Elizabeth II Stakes at Ascot the following month.

 

The four-year-old Fastnet Rock filly, who won impressively on her only previous All-Weather start on debut over tomorrow's course and distance in 2017, finished 12th last time out in the G1 Breeders' Cup Mile, though beaten less than five lengths, at Churchill Downs, USA, on November 4.

 

I Can Fly is ridden by Ryan Moore and her main rival appears to be Surrounding (Ronan Whelan). The Mick Halford-trained six-year-old mare has been successful on her two most recent starts, both at Dundalk, the latest of which saw her beat G1 Irish 1,000 Guineas runner-up Could It Be Love, trained by O'Brien, in the Listed Irish Stallion Farms EBF Cooley Fillies & Mares Stakes on October 26.

 

The four runners are completed by Waitaki (Dermot McLoughlin/Conor Maxwell (3)) and Annie Fior (Brendan Murphy/Seamie Heffernan), who are both also winners on the All-Weather.

 

O'Brien is strongly represented in the other highlight on the card, the €75,000 Listed BetVictor Patton Stakes (7.45pm - eight runners) for three-year-olds over a mile, which forms part of the European Road to the Kentucky Derby.

 

O'Brien, who landed the spoils with subsequent high-class dirt runner Mendelssohn in 2018, saddles three runners led by G1 Vertem Futurity Trophy third Western Australia (Ryan Moore), who ran to a career-best in the Doncaster feature on October 27 last year and has not raced since.

 

Van Beethoven (Donnacha O'Brien), winner of the G2 Railway Stakes at the Curragh in June, and promising Gowran Park maiden victor Albuquerque (Seamie Heffernan) complete the Ballydoyle trio.

 

The Halford runner Playa Del Puente (Ronan Whelan) is bidding to maintain his 100 per cent record at Dundalk. After an eye-catching turf third on debut at the Curragh, the Elzaam colt captured a seven-furlong maiden at Dundalk on October 12 before following up in a mile conditions race on December 19.

 

There is a British challenger courtesy of the Archie Watson-trained Barys (Edward Greatrex), who began his 2019 campaign with a Listed success on Polytrack at Cagnes-sur-Mer, France, on February 10.


The powerful eight-strong field also includes the Joseph O'Brien-trained pair of Colfer Me (Shane Foley) and Numerian (Wayne Lordan), both successful at Dundalk over the winter, and Leopardstown maiden scorer Manjeer (John Oxx/Ross Coakley).

 

The seven-race Dundalk programme tomorrow runs between 5.10pm and 8.15pm.

 

The European Road to the Kentucky Derby also includes tomorrow's £70,000 "Road To The Kentucky Derby" Conditions Race (7.00pm, nine runners) at Kempton Park.

 

Hamdan Al Maktoum's Jahbath (William Haggas/Jim Crowley) is three from three on All-Weather surfaces and scored by seven lengths on his latest start in a mile Fibresand handicap at Southwell on January 24.


G2 Vintage Stakes fourth Getchagetchagetcha (Clive Cox/Adam Kirby) and Chelmsford City maiden victor Spanish Mission (David Simcock/Jamie Spencer) also run.

 

Tomorrow's eight-race card at Kempton Park starts at 4.55pm, with the last due off at 8.30pm.

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