Heffernan banking on rising star Easter at Gowran Park

Ballydoyle chance ride a bright spot for the jockey as Turf Club upholds its 10-day ban

Seamus Heffernan will begin his 10-day ban for dangerous riding on September 27th, following the failure  of his Turf Club appeal yesterday. Photograph: Morgan Treacy/INPHO

Seamus Heffernan will begin his 10-day ban for dangerous riding on September 27th, following the failure of his Turf Club appeal yesterday. Photograph: Morgan Treacy/INPHO

 

Seamus Heffernan is on board the Ballydoyle hope, Easter, in Sunday’s Group 3 Gowran feature and will be hoping for a more positive outcome than at the Turf Club on Friday, where the multiple-classic winning jockey had his appeal against a 10-day ban for dangerous riding thrown out.

Heffernan picked up the suspension at the Curragh on the final leg of Champions Weekend for his ride on In Salutem in a handicap, less than a couple of hours before he landed the Group 1 Moyglare Stud Stakes on Minding.

The ban takes a substantial chunk out of the remaining flat season for the rider, who begins his penalty on Sunday week, but has half a dozen rides to look forward to at Gowran, the Kilkenny venue where the conflicting sporting pull of All Ireland football final weekend may be at its least strong.

Joseph O’Brien’s inability to make 9st means Heffernan takes the reins on Easter in the Cordell Lavarack & Lanwades Stud Stakes, leaving the former champion jockey to team up with Secret Pursuit, one of two cross-channel raiders.

The Irish Oaks runner-up Jack Naylor is a ratings stand-out, but after another mile and a half outing in the Yorkshire Oaks last month, Jessica Harrington’s star is dropped back over two furlongs for this heat.

Even allowing for her Irish Guineas fourth in May, the move represents a test for Jack Naylor and in the circumstances there could be a value alternative in Off Limits, rated 8lbs inferior but coming off an impressive Listed victory at Killarney and looking to be still on the upgrade.

The field for the opening fillies maiden all carry 9st, so Heffernan is on the newcomer Best In The World, a full sister to Found, but in the following colts maiden, there are three Ballydoyle declarations in the field of 16, with Joseph O’Brien pencilled in on the first-reserve, Bay Of Biscay.

John Oxx’s Sea Of Mystery was ahead of Bay Of Biscay on their Curragh debuts, behind Beacon Rock, and should step up significantly for that experience, while Barnacle Bill can return to action with a win in the concluding conditions event.

Given the counter attractions at Croke Park, the final leg of Listowel’s weather-interrupted festival – switched to Sunday and a winter 12.15pm off-time – could mean a bigger attendance at the competing flat fixture in Gowran rather than the Kerry jumps meeting.

That won’t matter much to Barry Geraghty, who teams up with Tigris River in the €55,000 Lartigue Hurdle. Prior to his Cork win, Tigris River looked to have plenty in hand of his rival Zafayan at Galway’s summer festival.

Rock The World scored at Galway too earlier this month and looks another prime contender for Geraghty in the novice chase.

A 10-race card of trotting and pacing races will take place at Dundalk on Sunday, September 27th. Horse Racing Ireland has given its support, following government backing for the fixture. Dundalk’s chief executive Jim Martin and said: “We have always shown our desire to host harness racing at Dundalk and we welcome the return of harness racing to our venue alongside thoroughbred and greyhound racing.”

The Irish Harness Racing Association welcomed the move which will see trotting at Dundalk for the first time since 2008. The start time is 2pm.

The Irish Times Logo
Commenting on The Irish Times has changed. To comment you must now be an Irish Times subscriber.
SUBSCRIBE
GO BACK
Error Image
The account details entered are not currently associated with an Irish Times subscription. Please subscribe to sign in to comment.
Comment Sign In

Forgot password?
The Irish Times Logo
Thank you
You should receive instructions for resetting your password. When you have reset your password, you can Sign In.
The Irish Times Logo
Please choose a screen name. This name will appear beside any comments you post. Your screen name should follow the standards set out in our community standards.
Screen Name Selection

Hello

Please choose a screen name. This name will appear beside any comments you post. Your screen name should follow the standards set out in our community standards.

The Irish Times Logo
Commenting on The Irish Times has changed. To comment you must now be an Irish Times subscriber.
SUBSCRIBE
Forgot Password
Please enter your email address so we can send you a link to reset your password.

Sign In

Your Comments
We reserve the right to remove any content at any time from this Community, including without limitation if it violates the Community Standards. We ask that you report content that you in good faith believe violates the above rules by clicking the Flag link next to the offending comment or by filling out this form. New comments are only accepted for 3 days from the date of publication.