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Fallon rides into town to light up Ulster Derby day

By Ron McKnight

Published 18/06/2016

Derby delight: Botany Bay and jockey Niall McCullagh after winning last year's Magners Ulster Derby at Down Royal
Derby delight: Botany Bay and jockey Niall McCullagh after winning last year's Magners Ulster Derby at Down Royal
Six-times champion jockey Kieren Fallon

Kieren Fallon's appearance adds to the occasion on a day when an intriguing Magners Ulster Derby tops the card at Down Royal.

The six-times champion jockey is on board It's Your Turn, Midnite Ride, Penelope Pitstop and Nice Vintage, though the 51-year-old doesn't yet have a ride in the £100,000 showpiece.

Tonkinese gets the vote to capture the premier flat race in the province and add to trainer Michael Halford's big race tally this week - the Curragh trainer having already registered success with Portage in the Royal Hunt Cup at Royal Ascot.

The selection ran an excellent race last time when third at the Curragh to Qatari Hunter and in his two prior races was denied by a head and short head.

The step up in trip should also suit the Godolphin-owned runner with the 'Boys in Blue' also represented by Raconteur notably making his handicap debut.

Lieutenant General despite top weight rates a major danger and had Zalfana in arrears when third in a listed contest last time.

Stellar Mass won last time at the Curragh and bids to give trainer Jim Bolger another victory in the big race.

British trainer Ed Dunlop has diverted Manjaam from Royal Ascot to Down Royal and has place prospects.

The Coolmore Stud-sponsored Ulster Oaks is the supporting feature on the card and Ceol Na Nog - a winner on Thursday at Leopardstown can complete a four timer.

The Jim Bolger filly looks very progressive while the Aga Khan owned pair, Simannka and Rayisa appear the dangers.

Gold Locket, Sir Dreamalot, Jack Flash and Shisadiesel appeal in the opening two year maiden - the last named trained by Noel Meade better known for jumps winners is preferred.

Little Sweetheart, Greek Canyon, Battleoftheboyne and Calm Bay attempting to win the race for the third successive year make most appeal in the sprint handicap. The seven furlong handicap has been divided. Fairy Foxgloves, Buzz Boy and Duncan Of Scotland have claims in the first division, the latter a possible to give Moira trainer Lee Smyth a repeat success in the race.

The Moira trainer has booked Fallon for Penelope Pitstop in division two with prospects of completing the double. Derrylin trainer David Christie could also have a say with Jaguar Paw but Acroleina and Oor Jock appear the principal contenders.

DOWN ROYAL DERBY DAY TIPS: 2.15 Sheisadiesel 2.50 Greek Canyon 3.25 Duncan Of Scotland 3.55 Acroleina 4.35 Tonkinese (2nd Lieutenant General 3rd Stellar Mass) 5.05 Ceol Na Nog 5.40 Could Should Would 6.10 Boca Raton

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