JESSICA Harrington and Shane Foley enjoyed double success at Gowran Park last Saturday with the highlight Paris Peacock (103) landing the Group 3 Denny Cordell Lavarack & Lanwades Stud Fillies & Mares Stakes.
Having found winning a maiden difficult, the daughter of Muhaarar has now won twice at Gowran, running to the same level last weekend as on her previous win in mid-August when winning a listed contest.
The data suggest she has reached the ceiling of her ability, an assessment which is supported by the relatively slow closing sectionals which offer little encouragement for potential improvement.
The early gallop was strong as first Nathan Crosse on Believeinmiracles (97) and then to a lesser extent Dylan Browne McMonagle on Tranquil Lady (97) challenged Galleria Borghese for the lead. This no doubt thwarted Wayne Lordan’s plan to set a sedate gallop as once again Aidan O’Brien’s filly found a strong pace at the trip stretching her stamina.
The winner and second, Kawida (103), were positioned behind the early speed and, although they were as inseparable passing the three-furlong marker as they were at the line, the differing routes which they took to the winning post was a major factor in the outcome of the race.
Shane Foley steered a course towards the centre of the track in the straight as his filly completed her closing three-furlong sectional in 37.30secs, 2.31secs slower than Maud Gonne Spirit, who was fastest on the day.
Kawida and Declan McDonogh were forced to pursue the rail run having raced against the rail throughout from stall one. The circumstances which developed early played against Ed Walker’s filly as the early exertions of Believeinmiracles took their toll and she faded into the lap of the Oaks sixth, stopping her run from gathering full stride until deep into the final furlong.
Supporters of the Sir Percy filly will no doubt feel aggrieved as it looked to cost her victory.
Term Of Endearment (101) produced the best finishing effort and can be upgraded as she was in the last pair as the field turned for home, which contributed to Shane Crosse having to challenge widest.
Henry de Bromhead’s filly stopped the clock for her sectional at 36.92secs and will no doubt be better for the run having been off the track for 87 days prior this assignment.
Maud Gonne Spirit (94+) defied an even longer lay off, with her victory in the opening race coming after an absence of 335 days.
The overall time figure was impacted by a visible pause in the pace passing the half-mile marker, although this may have helped Jessica Harrington’s mare post her closing sectional of 34.99secs.
The presence of Pretty Rebel (94+) in second adds to the positive view of the race as Gerard O’Leary’s mare lists a course-and-distance second to the progressive Night Of Romance on her CV.
On just his third start, Godolphin’s Marcher Lord (93) ran with credit while Massaman (92+) and Pale Iris (92+) came home strongly. Jack Davison’s versatile four-year-old was returning to form after a below par effort at the Curragh and now has form figures of 124 at the Co Kilkenny track, excluding his run as a two-year-old.
Pale Iris was making a return to the track after 120 days and fitted with first-time cheekpieces. The daughter of Dragon Pulse reserves her best for when there is cut in the ground.
The two races over the extended mile and a furlong were run in a similar time from stalls to the line and there was also little to separate Dare To Flare (88) and The Lute Player (88) from the three-furlong marker as they clocked 37.68secs and 37.90secs respectively.
The races over a mile disappointed on the clock, with Speirling Beag (74) the only winner to take forward courtesy of her closing sectional of 35.32secs in the fillies’ maiden.
To complete the data, Mister Mister (68) stopped the clock at 35.68secs and Miracles In May (70) covered the same ground in 36.94secs in winning the 47-65 handicap.