Trainer Kevin Prendergast,83, captured his second Irish 2000 Guineas at the Curragh on Saturday, albeit with a 40-year gap between the two. Awtaad, a 3-year-old son of Cape Cross, scored a 2 1/2-length victory over the favored Galileo Gold, according to racingpost.com. The latter colt was the winner of last month's Newmarket QIPCO 2000 Guineas.
The race was the first foray into group company for Awtaad, though he had won a listed stakes in his most recent start. Over yielding turf, jockey Chris Hayes negotiated one mile in 1:45.26, avoiding the traffic problems that plagued Galileo Gold's jockey Frankie Dettori.
“The boss gave me no instructions, except not to get there too soon, which I did, but I saw Frankie was in trouble on the rail and I wanted to make it as hard as possible for him,” said Hayes, who punched the air in delight as he rocketed to the finishing line. “He's the best horse I've ever ridden.”
Prendergast echoed the sentiment: “He's definitely as good a horse as I've had, and I had Ardross. He was a good horse, but this one's the best I've had in a long time.”
Once again, 2-year-old champion Air Force Blue declined to fire, finishing second-to-last under Ryan Moore.
In the fillies' Group 1 Tattersalls 1000 Guineas, Jet Setting upset the heavy favorite Minding to provide a bargain victory for her connections; the sophomore daughter of Fast Company had been purchased for just $19,345 (US) at last year's Tattersalls Horses-in-Training Sale. It was the first classic win for jockey Shane Foley, and she was trained to the victory by Adrian Paul Keatley.
Read more at racingpost.com.
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