Boughey and Haggas target The Curragh as Flat season returns
Classic winning trainers George Boughey and William Haggas will look to add further international success this week when they target the Paddy Power Irish Lincolnshire at The Curragh on Saturday.
The Irish Flat season will begin at HQ with the Boughey-trained Totally Charming the market leader with the big race sponsors for the €100,000 premier handicap. Boughey landed a listed race in Chantilly in midweek and will be looking for big race honours at Meydan on Saturday as well as The Curragh.
Boughey has booked champion jockey Colin Keane for what will be just his fourth ever runner in Ireland and Paddy Power make the five-year-old their early favourite.
Haggas, who claimed Group 1 honours in Australia last Saturday, has his team in fine form ahead of the start of the turf season in Britain next week and is favouring a tilt at The Curragh this weekend with the lightly raced Lattam.
Lattam was a two-time winner from four starts last year and Haggas provided an upbeat bulletin on the four-year-old following declarations this morning.
“Lattam is very well. I think he will enjoy the ground and the straight mile will suit him so we are looking forward to running him,” Haggas said from his Newmarket base.
“His form did tail off a bit last season but he seems to be in good form this spring and I hope there is some improvement in the tank. That is what you are hoping with horses like him at this time of year and while he still have a big of improvement to come in his coat, he is pretty fit and well.”
Haggas enjoyed Curragh success with Alenquer in the Group 1 Tattersalls Gold Cup last season and has booked Chris Hayes to ride Lattam.
“We’ve had the odd winner in Ireland without having many runners over there but I felt the ground could be important to Lattam and I can’t guarantee we’d get his ground for our own Lincoln so we pointed him to The Curragh. Chris Hayes rides him and he knows the time of day. We have used Chris a bit over here and he rode a nice winner for us at Naas last year and a listed winner for us at Dundalk previously. The owners are all set to go and are looking forward to a great day.”
Johnny Murtagh will launch a three-pronged attack on the Irish Lincolnshire as he eyes back to back wins in the €100,000 opening day showpiece.
The Curragh-based trainer has promising apprentice Yudish Geerdharry claiming 10lbs off Carrytheone with Mashhoor and Miss Mirabell also taking their chance for Murtagh.
Trainer Ado McGuinness is once again targeting the Paddy Power Lincolnshire with big numbers. McGuinness had three runners in the 2020 renewal which he won with Bowerman and saddled seven of the field last year with third placed Star Harbour the best of his runners then. The Dublin native has nine runners in the 27 runner field at the moment and also Sirjack Thomas who is the first reserve for Saturday’s feature.
Course and distance winner Emporio will represent Donnacha O’Brien and will be ridden by Paddy Harnett. O’Brien said earlier in the week: “He handles soft ground and is quite a high-class horse, probably a stakes horse, but a mile on soft ground is no problem and there are no problems with the conditions. I suppose to win a Lincoln, you probably have to be a stakes horse – I think he’s Listed class and we’ll find out more after he runs.”
Cosmic Vega and Inchturk will be noteworthy contenders for the historic Conyngham Lodge as the Michael Halford and Tracey Collins partnership saddle their first turf runners. The two respected trainers joined forces earlier this year and have a live contender for Saturday’s feature.
The well-travelled I Am Superman tops the weights for Michael O’Callaghan and will be ridden by Billy Lee, while stable companion Fastnet Crown is the mount of Jake Coen.
A field of 10 runners have been declared runners for the Lodge Park Stud Irish EBF Park Express Stakes. Last year’s runner-up Insinuendo heads the field for Willie McCreery who won the race in 2021 with Eopna Plays. Agartha, Kerkiyra, Star Girls Aalmal, Sunset Shiraz have all earned a rating of 100 or higher to date and add to a fascinating renewal of the Group 3 contest. A field of 11 will go to post for the Alkumait Standing At Capital Stallions Irish EBF Maiden for juveniles which kicks off the new Irish Flat season at 1.40pm on Saturday.