The Coolmore Ivawood Stakes is the showpiece at Tipperary tonight and the affair attracts several high-class juveniles.
Aidan O'Brien scooped the big pot at the Curragh yesterday and saddles BALLET SHOES this evening. The filly tops BTO+ ratings and could be another typical protege of the Ballydoyle handler. Ballet Shoes was beaten by a length margin on her debut at Naas, but that defeat wouldn't have worried connections. In hindsight, the affair was too sharp of a trip for her and O'Brien's runners scarcely win on their first run. The daughter of Galileo scratched off her duck at the Curragh last time when stepped up to one mile. The filly seemed to relish the extra distance and recorded a taking one-and-a-half length victory. There should be more improvement to come from Ballet Shoes and O'Brien brags a superb 26% strike rate in the past fortnight.
LETHAL STEPS is putting his unbeaten record on the line at Tipperary and is making his debut in Pattern company. Ger Lyons' charge has made plenty of positive impressions in his first two runs and is second-best rated by BTO+. The son of Lethal Force made an impressive winning debut at Leopardstown. Despite dwelling in the early stages and being bumped out of the stalls, the colt shrugged off those hindrances and stuck on stoutly in the closing stages to score by a short head. Lethal Steps' second performance at Killarney was even more devastating as the colt cruised to a six-length win when giving weight away to the field. Although it's his first time in Pattern company Lethal Steps should make a seamless transition. Colin Keane rides and he and Lyons brag a 47% better-than-expected win rate at Tipperary together.
Gordon Elliot says his horses on the Flat are a bit of fun but MONKEYLOU looks more than just a toy to play around with. The son of Dream Ahead turned plenty of heads when he made his debut at Listowel in June. Monkeylou travelled smoothly into the race and he showed a sharp turn of foot to leave his opponents in his wake and romped to a two-and-three-quarter length success. The colt should only improve and Declan McDonough has been booked to ride, and he boasts a 31% better-than-expected win rate over today's course and distance.
STRIKE FOR FREEDOM bids to get back to winning ways. Jim Bolger's colt was a one-length second at Naas last time when he stayed on well take claim the runners-up spot. Beforehand, Strike for Freedom won his maiden by a neck at the Curragh on soft ground and yielding conditions should please the horse.
O'Brien's second-string horse won the feature at Leopardstown yesterday so it would be no surprise if EASTER LILY lands herself in the winner's enclosure. The daughter of Galileo won at Leopardstown on her second start, but was well beaten in the Flash Stakes last time and must improve.
Article Posted on Friday 11th August 2017 @ 07.35
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