THE three-day Easter meeting at Cork commences on Saturday, running through until Easter Monday.
On Saturday’s flat card (1.25pm start), the Tony Mullins-trained Princess Zoe will be the undoubted star attraction if lining up in the featured Grade 3 Irish Stallion Farms EBF Noblesse Stake over one and a half miles. The grey Princess Zoe, a German import, developed into one of our standout performers last season and she capped an amazing campaign by recording a game last-gasp success with Joey Sheridan in the Group 1 Qatar Prix du Cadran over an extended two miles three furlongs in the mud at Longchamp on ‘Arc’ weekend.
The drop back in trip to 12 furlongs is unlikely to inconvenience the 110-rated Princess Zoe, who has this season’s ‘Arc’ as her long-term target, and the six-year-old is recommended to show a clean pair of heels to Dermot Weld’s Amma Grace.
The main supporting event is the Sean Barrett Bloodstock Stakes over six furlongs and Denis Hogan’s outstanding sprinter Make A Challenge is likely to take all the beating in this listed contest.
Make A Challenge is another that experienced a stellar campaign last summer by winning four races and he was far from disgraced when finishing eighth in the Group 1 Prix de l’Abbaye at Lonchamp in October. The six-year-old Make A Challenge, who has now amassed prizemoney earnings of almost €270, 000, should get his career back on track by excelling from Jim Bolger’s previous course winner Fiscal Rules.
Proceeding close with the Racing Again Tomorrow Maiden for three-year-olds’ and Sir William Bruce looks the part here. The Aidan O’Brien-trained Sir William Bruce was only overtaken inside the final strides when beaten a head into second place by Trusted Ally in a one-mile maiden at Gowran Park last September and the son of Galileo should go one better by excelling from Colour Sergeant.
On Sunday, there is an eight-race jumps card (1. 30pm start) and Bachasson should continue on his merry way by winning the featured Grade 3 BARONERACING.COM Chase over three miles.
The Willie Mullins-trained Bachasson, owned by the O’Connell family from Glanmire, has won all four starts this season with the son of Voix Du Nord having little more than an exercise stroll to beat Castlegrace Paddy by 16 lengths on his most recent outing in a Grade 2 chase at Gowran Park on March 2nd. Bachasson should continue in a victorious by disposing of Coko Beach.
The latter’s handler ‘Sneezy’ Foster should capture the BARONERACING.COM Hurdle with the admirable Petit Mouchoir, who finished second on his most recent start at the Cheltenham festival, whilst Master McShee will also hold prospects in this two-mile event. Meanwhile, Sam Curling’s Shantreusse is preferred to newcomer Bite That in the Jim Ryan Racecourse Services (Pro/Am) Flat Race.
On Easter Monday, there will be another eight-race jumps card with the action getting underway at 1.50pm.