Manning keen on Leopardstown for Pleascach
Jim Bolger is not ruling out taking on Gleneagles, Golden Horn, Free Eagle, Cirrus Des Aigles and last year’s winner The Grey Gatsby in the QIPCO Irish Champion Stakes with his Tattersalls Irish 1,000 Guineas and Darley Yorkshire Oaks winner Pleascach.
Bolger’s son-in-law and stable jockey Kevin Manning is pushing for her inclusion in what could be the race of the season at Leopardstown on September 12th. Both trainer and jockey combined to win the race in 2008 with New Approach and Bolger had previously won the Irish Champion Stakes in 1986 with the John Reid-ridden Park Express. More recently, Trading Leather finished third for Bolger and Manning in the 10-furlong event in both 2013 and 2014.
Speaking at the Curragh over the weekend, Jim Bolger said, “Kevin is very keen to go for the QIPCO Irish Champion Stakes. After York, I was eyeing the Prix de l’Opera at Longchamp, but I wouldn’t rule out Leopardstown at this stage. We’ll see how she is coming up to it and also I have to talk to Sheikh Mohammed’s people and see if they would be happy with that. We’ll know nearer the time, but I know that Kevin is pushing for it anyway and that is a good sign. It would be lovely from a racegoer’s point of view to get her there and let the best horse win. It would certainly add some spice to the weekend. I said I am definitely not ruling it out.”
Bolger is sure to be well represented at both Leopardstown and the Curragh over both days of Longines Irish Champions Weekend. Of Lucida, who was runner-up in the QIPCO 1,000 Guineas at Newmarket in May and third in the Group 1 Coronation Stakes at Royal Ascot, Bolger said on Saturday, “At the minute she’ll go for the Coolmore Fastnet Rock Matron Stakes and is very well. She worked this morning after having had a short break. She is back on song and hopefully all will be well for Leopardstown in September.”
The Group 1 Goffs Vincent O’Brien National Stakes at the Curragh on Sunday, September 13th is the aim for Sanus Per Aquam. Bolger said, “He is in the National Stakes and that is his target now and he is very well. He was in the Futurity, but obviously I wasn’t going to run the two horses in the one race, so we are going to keep him for the National Stakes.”
Bolger added, “I will be targeting a lot of my good horses at that weekend. The very best races in Ireland are well worth winning and from a stud point of view, it means that your stallion or mare has a serious value if they can manage to win one of those good races.”
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