Highway on road to glory
The Blue Wind Stakes at Naas looks set to be next on the agenda for Princess Highway after her impressive victory in the Irish Stallion Farms EBF Maiden at Leopardstown yesterday.
Dermot Weld's filly beat some choicely-bred individuals by upwards of a length and three-quarters, and is poised to make the step up to Pattern company.
She had been strongly fancied on her debut in October but failed to handle soft ground.
Weld said: “She's a nice filly and that was a nice performance. I'd say that was a pretty good maiden — they went a true pace and she quickened up nicely.
“We'll probably go for the Blue Wind Stakes at Naas now, that would be the logical progression and we'll go from there.
“We won the Ribblesdale with her dam (Irresistible Jewel).
“She (Princess Highway) was a bit green and it was horrible ground (on her debut). She's a top of the ground filly and she's a lovely individual.”
Jim Bolger saw his Light Heavy floor favourite Furners Green in a tight finish to the Leopardstown On Facebook race.
The 13-8 market leader moved powerfully under Joseph O'Brien but Light Heavy, a son of Teofilo, found plenty for Kevin Manning and prevailed by half a length.
Bolger said: “A mile is the minimum for him and he'll step up from now on. He liked that faster ground and he'll improve throughout the year.
“We'll know more when we run him over a mile and a half. We could look at some of the Derby trials, something like the Ballysax (Leopardstown, April 15).”
William Carson experienced mixed feelings at Lingfield, with delight at a double on Catalyze and Red Senor tempered by picking up a seven-day suspension.
The downside came after he had steered Richard Guest's Catalyze home in the Platers And Stampers Selling Stakes.
The evens favourite landed a gamble when holding off Riflessione by a neck, but Carson was found guilty by the local stewards of using his whip above the permitted level.
He will be out from April 11-14 and April 16-18, meaning he misses the first day of the Craven meeting at Newmarket.
Carson had a much easier time on Red Senor in the Pots And Pans Median Auction Maiden Stakes.
The 15-8 favourite, trained by Charlie Hills, was not hard-pressed to beat Samba Night by two and three-quarter lengths.
All-weather title-chasing Luke Morris produced Co Down trainer Stan Moore’s 2-1 favourite Copper Canyon inside the final furlong to take the Cushionsmart Handicap by three and three-quarter lengths from Kiss A Prince.
Moore said: “He was a bit unlucky in his last couple of runs. He stumbled the time he was fourth and last time the race wasn't run to suit.
“He's progressive, he'll probably get further and hopefully there will be a couple more nice handicaps in him.”