Mehnah (Timeform rating: 105p) Leopardstown – Sunday 11 April
There was an upset in the 1000 Guineas Trial which went to 80/1-shot Keeper of Time who had the benefit of a run already this season and avoided the trouble which others met in the large of fifteen. But shaping as though very much the one to take out of the race was runner-up Mehnah who was just a head behind the winner at the line but in front just a stride or two afterwards. Dropped out, she was still last with three furlongs to run but finished best of all once brought with her run out wide and only just failed.
That was Mehnah’s second start after she had made a winning debut in a maiden at Dundalk last September when she again came from well off the pace, having been slowly away. While both of her starts have been at seven furlongs, there’s not doubt she’ll be suited by stepping up to a mile as she’s a half-sister to her stable’s Irish 2000 Guineas winner Awtaad, and probably further still, as she’s by Frankel and her other siblings include the smart Al Zaraqaan, recent winner of the Rosebery Handicap at Kempton. Mehnah is sure to do better and one to follow. Kevin Prendergast
😲 An 80/1 winner 🐎— Leopardstown RC (@LeopardstownRC) April 11, 2021
⌛ Keeper Of Time knew where she had to be and springs a surprise to win the Group Three @BallylinchStud "Priory Belle" 1000 Guineas Trial Stakes for @WhelanRonan and John James Feane ✨#BallylinchStudClassicTrialsDay pic.twitter.com/2gJfMSl4Ul
Ace Aussie (107p) Leopardstown – Sunday 11 April
The 2000 Guineas Trial looked an above-average renewal, with the pace sound and the form looking solid, and it threw up a realistic classic contender in the shape of winner Poetic Flare. Runner-up Ace Aussie shaped very well too, though rather than a Guineas prospect, any classic aspirations for him are likely to be over longer trips as his Derby entry would suggest. He raced well off the pace and was being pushed along before the home turn but put in his best work at the finish after being forced to switch over a furlong out and was never nearer than at the line where he was a length and a half behind the winner.
Ace Aussie had three starts last year, confirming debut promise when winning a maiden at Cork. Conditions were much softer when he was sent off at just 9/2 for the Beresford Stakes at the Curragh but he wasn’t seen to best effect on that occasion and beat only two home. That was his only start so far at a mile, but Ace Aussie is bred to be well suited by further still as he’s by Australia and a close relative to Giuseppe Garibaldi who had smart form at up to a mile and three quarters as a three-year-old for Aidan O’Brien. Jessica Harrington
🌟 Picking up from where he left off 💫— Leopardstown RC (@LeopardstownRC) April 11, 2021
Poetic Flare continues his good form with a polished performance in the listed @BallylinchStud "Red Rocks" 2,000 Guineas Trial Stakes for @kmanning910 and Jim Bolger #BallylinchStudClassicTrialsDay pic.twitter.com/IOTSbWDi5t
Sir Lamorak (101p) Leopardstown – Sunday 11 April
While Aidan O’Brien won the card’s other classic trial, the Ballysax Stakes, with Bolshoi Ballet, Sir Lamorak revealed himself as a contender for a Derby trial himself in winning the mile and a quarter handicap for three-year-olds. It looked a very competitive contest on paper but, running off a Turf Club mark of 85, Sir Lamorak proved in league of his own under a confident ride from Ryan Moore, still having plenty to do three furlongs out but quickening to lead entering the final furlong and then forging clear for a three and three quarter length over Bear Story.
Sir Lamorak showed plenty of ability in both his maidens last season and finished fifth to Bolshoi Ballet on his debut at Leopardstown. He didn’t need to improve when getting off the mark on his return at Dundalk late last month when landing the odds in just workmanlike fashion in a race run at a crawl. He left that form well behind at Leopardstown and will go on improving, with a mile and a half sure to suit him in due course as he’s by Camelot out of a half-sister to the Irish Oaks winner Bracelet. Aidan O’Brien
🚀 Impressive turn of foot— Racing TV (@RacingTV) April 11, 2021
Bred in the purple Sir Lamorak (Camelot) quickens up in fine fashion to make a successful handicap debut & complete a quickfire double for Aidan O'Brien & Ryan Moore at @LeopardstownRC @Ballydoyle
Results & free replays ➡ https://t.co/sBcsavHpYf pic.twitter.com/KNAOtA36xW