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Toscanini tunes up for seasonal bow

Toscanini already has Royal Ascot on his agenda as prepares for his seasonal return in the Brews Hill Race at Navan.

Michael Halford's charge mixed it in good company last year, placing twice at Listed level including in the Chesham at Ascot, as well as in Group Three company.

He managed to win a Dundalk maiden, but posted his best effort when signing off with second behind subsequent 2000 Guineas hero Gleneagles in the National Stakes last September.

Godolphin's son of Shamardal drops back in trip to an extended five furlongs and his handler has high hopes.

He said: "I'm delighted with him. He has done terrific over the winter and I'm really pleased with him. He's in great form.

"He runs on Sunday, then he'll go for a Listed race in Naas, and then the Jersey Stakes. He has a very high rating and has mixed in very good company."

Qatar Racing pitch in Ainippe and Beach Belle against Toscanini, while the Aidan O'Brien-trained Father Frost caught the eye when making a winning bow in a Cork maiden last month.

Halford and jockey Shane Foley have another one of their high-profile performers in action as Russian Soul tackles the Handicap.

This valuable prize will not be easily won, with many of the 16 participants holding claims. However, Russian Soul has the touch of class that could see him defy his 10st 5lb burden.

Forgotten Rules' half-brother Time To Inspire will have plenty of supporters in the Excelebration Maiden and he still holds an entry in the Investec Derby.

Last month's course and distance victor Curvy will try to repeat the dose in the Irish Stallion Farms EBF Fillies Handicap

The concluding Pour Moi EBF Maiden features a handful of newcomers but Jinsha Lake, second here previously, could be the one to support on this occasion.


From Belfast Telegraph