Lope Y Fernandez aims to make it ‘ninth time lucky’ in bid for first Group One win

Aidan O’Brien’s colt faces major task against favourite Palace Pier in Lockinge Stakes

 Colin Keane on board Siskin comes home to win ahead of Seamus Heffernan on board Lope Y Fernandez in The Tattersalls Irish 2,000 Guineas at the Curragh in June 2020. Photograph: Caroline Norris/Inpho

Colin Keane on board Siskin comes home to win ahead of Seamus Heffernan on board Lope Y Fernandez in The Tattersalls Irish 2,000 Guineas at the Curragh in June 2020. Photograph: Caroline Norris/Inpho

 

Aidan O’Brien’s Lope Y Fernandez will try to make it “ninth time lucky” when he goes in pursuit of a first Group One success in Saturday’s Al Shaqab Lockinge Stakes at Newbury.

The colt who was placed four times at the top level last year, including in the Irish Guineas and at the Breeders’ Cup, faces a major task against the hot favourite Palace Pier in Britain’s initial Group One of the year for older horses.

Ryan Moore won the Lockinge for O’Brien in 2018 with Rhododendron and teams up with Lope Y Fernandez in the mile highlight before travelling to Naas on Sunday for its “Ascot Trials” programme.

The final five races at Naas will be shown live on RTÉ 2 which has added the fixture to its racing schedule.

Moore will again partner the exciting two-year-old Contarelli Chapel who made a major impression when making a winning debut over the course the distance of the Group Three Coolmore Sprint Stakes almost three weeks ago.

The Curragh winner Quick Suzy should supply a sturdy test of her Royal Ascot credentials while earlier Cadamosto will be widely expected to follow up his debut victory in Dundalk.

Disqualification

Silver Surfer was runner-up to Cadamosto on that occasion and also subsequently to another promising Ballydoyle runner, King Of Bavaria.

On both occasions though he blew the start. If he doesn’t repeat, then Paddy Harnett’s 7lb claim could prove important.

Magnanimous showed enough speed when runner-up in the Tetrarch last time to suggest a drop in trip for the Lacken Stakes may suit.

In other news, the partner of a Curragh trainer has been given a six-month disqualification for verbal abuse and insulting behaviour towards stewards and officials at a Cork fixture last month.

Details emerged on Friday of how Daniel Dunne, the partner and authorised racecourse representative of trainer Katy Brown, was penalised by a referrals panel chaired by Ms Justice Leonie Reynolds.

The panel heard that Dunne and Brown appeared before the Cork stewards on April 3rd after a complaint by the Irish Horseracing Regulatory Board vet Nicola O’Connor that she had been verbally abused.

Dunne “lost the head” at what he felt was a failure to withdraw a Brown-trained runner at the start after another horse beside it got upset in the stalls and was subsequently withdrawn.

He left prior to the conclusion of the inquiry and the stewards referred his behaviour on to referrals panel.

In a lengthy ruling, Justice Reynolds concluded that Dunne had shown a complete lack of respect to the IHRB vet in terms of verbal abuse and vile language which caused O’Connor “understandable distress”.

He was also found to have been shown “wholly impermissible and insulting behaviour towards the stewards”.

Dunne was disqualified for six months with the final three months suspended for a period of one year.

Brown was warned that as the licence holder the onus is on her to ensure her authorised representative conducts himself appropriately. She agreed to pay €500 in IHRB costs.

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.