Grid and Shane Crosse© Photo Healy Racing
Beaten favourite Baldomero didn’t come up to expectations for the Joseph O’Brien yard in the opener, but Grid did the business for the Piltown operator in the Follow Us On Instagram Maiden at Cork.
O’Brien relegated his father Aidan to the runner-up position in this mile event, as Ballydoyle’s Handel (2/1 favourite) couldn’t match the Shane Crosse-ridden Grid (5/2).
Always to the fore the Lloyd J Williams Syndicate-owned 81-rated three-year-old kept on well in the final furlong to account for Handel (rated 80) by two and a quarter lengths.
"Shane said he coped with the ground, he is a bigger stronger horse this year. His form is rock solid and was fourth to Bolshoi Ballet back in October and he can only go forward from here,” said stable representative Brendan Powell.
"He is a nice big horse and I think there is plenty of improvement to come from him. He has pace, stays well and there is a nice future with him."
At the request of the Stewards, C.D. Maxwell, rider of Must B Art trained by Patrick Martin, reported to the Stewards' Secretaries that his mount was sluggish away from the stalls, took a while to warm up and stayed on .
At the request of the Stewards, M.A. Enright, rider of Risky Pursuit trained by Eoin Joseph McDonagh, reported to the Stewards' Secretaries that his mount struck him in the face on leaving stalls and restricted his vision for the first two furlongs, later on met traffic problems in the straight which hindered his challenge.
The Stewards received a request from G.M.Lyons, trainer, of Zola Sakura to substitute the nominated rider G.F. Carroll, with C.T. Keane, due to his intended mount Apres Tol (GB), trained by D.K. Weld being a non runner. Shane Lyons, Authorised Representative for the trainer, stated that as C.T. Keane is the stable jockey and had become available, the owners of Zola Sakura wished to have him ride their charge. He confirmed that the declared rider was fully aware of the situation and supported the request. When questioned why Mr. Keane was originally declared to ride Apres Toi, he stated that the Mr. Keane rode out for Mr. Weld once a week and had a gentleman's agreement in place with him with the concent of G.M. Lyons, whereby from time to time, he would be released to ride for Mr. Weld if better opportunities were presented. Having considered the matter and the reasons put forward for consideration, the Stewards allowed the request on this occasion using their powers under Regulation 3. Furthermore, the Stewards stressed that today's decision was not to be seen as a precedent for any similar requests should they arise in future.
(TW & EM)