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Tuesday, March 4, 2003



ARENA LEISURE TO REWARD STABLE STAFF ON THEIR RICHEST RACE DAY




Ian Penrose, Group Managing Director for Arena Leisure is delighted to announce that the Arena Group will be donating a £500 bonus to each winning stable at Lingfield Park on Saturday 15th March. This meeting is the richest ever all weather race meeting staged in this country, with £210,000 in total prize money on the day which features the £60,000 Littlewoods Bet Direct Winter Derby and The £75,000 Spring Cup.


Ian Penrose commented: "We really appreciate all the hard work that goes into preparing horses for races and caring for them generally, especially in the depths of winter. This is one of the ways we will be rewarding the staff from stables which have supported our all weather season. Each stable with a winner on the eight race card, will receive a cash bonus of £500, the money will go to the stable staff, to be spent as they wish."



IRISH THOROUGHBRED NEWS




WILLY SHOOTS THEM DOWN AT HAYDOCK

The Irish-bred Shotgun Willy made his belated first appearance of the season a winning one when landing the Grade 3 Red Square Vodka Gold Cup Handicap chase at Haydock on Saturday.


By Be My Native out of the Strong Gale mare Minorettes Girl, Shotgun Willy showed considerable battling qualities under top-weight to land the spoils in the final strides.

Many see this race as a good Aintree Grand National trial, the winner, having his first run in 315 days, is the new ante-post favourite for the race.


The winner, bred by T McKeever, was sold at Tattersalls (Ireland) November National Hunt Sale for IR19,000gns.


TOP IRISH-BREDS HEAD FOR DUBAI WORLD CUP

A trio of top-class Irish-bred performers will represent leading owners Godolphin in the valuable Dubai World Cup at Nad Al Sheba next month.


Grandera (Grand Lodge), a winner in three countries last year, French Derby winner Sulamani (Hernando) and Moon Ballad (Singspiel) will all run as Godolphin bid to win the race for the fourth time in five years.


Trainer Saeed Bin Suroor said, "All three horses have the class to run in the race. The Dubai World Cup is a very difficult event to win and we always try to send the best Godolphin horses for the race."

DELIGHT AS LAD GETS BACK ON TRACK

Limestone Lad has recovered from a cough and is firmly back on course for the Stayers' Hurdle at Cheltenham next week.


The highly popular 11-year-old delighted connections when working well at Thurles racecourse early last week and is now set for an eagerly awaited clash with Baracouda at the Festival next Wednesday.


Limestone Lad continued his Cheltenham preparations after racing at Leopardstown on Sunday. Michael Bowe rode Limestone Lad in his crucial gallop and said afterwards, "He worked like a bird. He had no company but he just took off with me and I could not be more pleased."

BOWE FAMILY HIT AS LEADING FILLY IS RULED OUT

Just 24 hours after Limestone Lad was confirmed a runner in the Stayers' Hurdle at Cheltenham, leading Irish hope Solerina was ruled out of the Royal & SunAlliance Novices' Hurdle.


A winner of her last six starts for James and Michael Bowe, the home-bred daughter of Toulon will miss the race after she was found to have developed an infection in the cannon bone region of her near-hind leg.


Solerina, the rising star of the Irish National Hunt scene, is one of just four horses in training at the Bowe's stables and was rated an 8/1 chance for Cheltenham glory.


COMMANCHE COURT GOES STRAIGHT FOR GOLD

Commanche Court, runner-up to Best Mate in the Gold Cup last season, missed an intended engagement at Leopardstown on Sunday and heads straight to Cheltenham.


Trainer Ted Walsh also turned down the opportunity to work his 10-year-old at the course after racing but plans to gallop his big race hope at Leopardstown this week.


The Gold Cup will be run next Thursday, March 13.


HOURIGAN'S HIGH PROFILE TEAM TAKING SHAPE

Michael Hourigan, responsible for rising star Beef Or Salmon, will be represented by at least three runners at Cheltenham next week.


Ireland's great Festival hope worked on Saturday morning in company with smart novice hurdler Hi Cloy and Hourigan was happy with what he saw.


Hourigan said, "Beef Or Salmon worked with Hi Cloy, who goes for the SunAlliance Hurdle. He went well and will work again during the week."

Dorans Pride will also represent the County Limerick trainer at Cheltenham. The gelding had been retired last year before making a surprise return to the point-to-point field this season.


Dorans Pride is being lined up for a seventh Festival appearance and will run in the Christie's Foxhunter Chase.


Hourigan said, "Dorans Pride was not enjoying his retirement and we decided to let him run in point-to-points. He's won three and also finished second in a hunters' chase at Leopardstown."

JENNIFERJO TOO STRONG IN MICK HOLLY CHASE

Jenniferjo won her fifth race and her second over fences when proving far too strong for nine rivals in the EUR35,000 Listed Mick Holly Memorial Handicap Chase at Leopardstown.


The winner of a conditions hurdle at the corresponding meeting last season, Jenniferjo continues to improve and may take her chance in the EUR170,000 Powers Gold Label Irish Grand National at Fairyhouse on Easter Monday, April 21.


For old articles (from 1st March 2000) go to the Newslink Archive


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