Zoffany wins Golden Fleece Stakes at Leopardstown
Aidan O'Brien's Zoffany created a big impression yesterday in landing the feature Golden Fleece Stakes at Leopardstown.
Sixth in what looked a good renewal of the Coventry Stakes at Royal Ascot behind Strong Suit, the Dansili colt has a future of his own.
Seamie Heffernan went past long-time leader and British raider Stentorian at the furlong pole and was not at all pushed to come two lengths clear as the 4/7 favourite.
Heffernan said of his mount, who holds Group One engagements: “He's a good horse. He was a bit disappointing at Royal Ascot but he learned a lot from it. I think he'd stay a mile.”
In the opener Kissable had to work hard to see off Palinode in the Irish Stallion Farms EBF Fillies Maiden. Palinode went on two furlongs out but could not see off the Kevin Prendergast-trained winner, which dug deep to come out on top by a neck as the 8/11 market leader.
James Kelly, racing manager to winning owner Lady O'Reilly, said: “We're delighted with that win. Declan (McDonogh) thought the ground might have been a shade quick for her but Leopardstown always do such a terrific job with the ground, it's always safe.
Invincible Ash only had to be nudged out to record a pillar-to-post success under Gary Carroll in the Clonkeen Fillies Race.
Turned out again quickly after dotting up at the Curragh on Sunday, Michael Halford's mare had no trouble justifying 6/5 favouritism.
Halford said: “We were a little concerned running her so quick, but we'll freshen her up now and aim her for the Listed fillies race at Naas.”
Rising star Carroll doubled up on Inwood (9/2) in the Aslan Handicap for Paul Magnier.
Sam Twiston-Davies was handed a 12-day ban after riding a finish a circuit too early on Hermoso in the stanjames.com Handicap Hurdle at Perth.
The youngster replaced stable jockey Paddy Brennan, who was injured a day earlier, on the five-year-old trained by his father Nigel.
“It was a big mistake really. Paddy was injured so we had a late swap and I didn't really do enough homework to be honest with you,” said the rider, who only recently turned professional.
“I should know three miles is three times past the last, but I was travelling well and I thought I'd kick for home but it turned out I had another circuit to go.
“It's swings and roundabouts. I'll learn from my mistake and hopefully it won't happen again.
Thankfully for the jockey, he rode a winner later on Billie Magern in the Timothy Hardie Jewellers Novices' Chase.
“He really looked after me and cheered me up a little bit. Ollie wasn't a very good hurdler but this lad was and has started off well over fences,” he said.