Diva hits the high notes to land Curragh prize

Mango Diva and Ryan Moore, right, get the better of Lahinch Classic. Picture: PA
Mango Diva and Ryan Moore, right, get the better of Lahinch Classic. Picture: PA
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RYAN Moore and Sir Michael Stoute teamed up for the second year in a row to land the Kilboy Estate Stakes at the Curragh with Mango Diva.

After Dank took this before success overseas last year, similar targets may lie ahead for Mango Diva after she got up in the final stride of the Group Two.

Lahinch Classics made a bold bid and appeared to have done enough to cling on, having seen off Odeliz and the slightly disappointing My Titania.

But Moore is never in a mood to be denied and the 9-2 chance overhauled David Wachman’s filly to land the nine-furlong prize. My Titania was half a length back in third.

James Savage, Stoute’s travelling head lad, said: “We were glad there wasn’t much rain last night. She’s a good-moving filly and wants top of the ground. I was praying for it to stop but in the end it just made it nice ground.

“She’s progressive and forward moving and while that could be her trip, she will stay 10. She just gets caught on her head a bit over a mile. The boss and the owner will look for her next race, but she might follow the Dank route.”

Another British-trained winner was Tim Pitt’s Sir Maximilian (11-1) who flew down the centre of the track in a furiously run Rockingham Handicap to capture the prize from fellow raider Caspian Prince. Pitt said: “He’d have won the Wokingham. I had him in such good form, but he missed the cut. I was silly to run him in a Group Three after that.

“I was worried about the ground, it’s not that he needs cut, he just lacks a bit of early pace and if something gets an early run on him he can struggle to get them back.

“He does get six furlongs but a fast-run five suits him as well. He’s able to keep tabs on them and pick them up. My only other runner in Ireland finished stone last in the Goffs Million, so this is great. He’s in the Stewards’ Cup (32Red) but won’t go if it’s rattling quick. His main aim is the Ayr Gold Cup.”

Parish Hall (11-8) may not be the force he was in his two-year-old days but he remains a horse to be reckoned with just below the top class and won the Group Three Meld Stakes for Jim Bolger and Kevin Manning. Manning said: “He’s done it well and handled the ground and got the trip well. I wasn’t sure where the pace was going to come from, but I knew he had a turn of foot, so I just got him settled and followed the pace. My instructions were to drop him in and arrive late.”

Toogoodtobetrue, the 1-2 favourite, continued a fine weekend for Aidan O’Brien when getting off the mark 
at the second attempt in the Sycamore Lodge Equine Hospital European 
Breeders Fund Maiden. A close second on her debut at Naas earlier this month, the Oasis Dream filly confirmed that promise .

O’Brien said: “You’d have to be 
delighted with that. She came forward lovely from her first run. Joseph [O’Brien] was very happy with her and he thinks she is a very nice filly. She will love stepping up to seven furlongs and she could be one for the Debutante or the Moyglare.”

Brendan Duke enjoyed a welcome winner and a change of luck as Intenser (14-1) got on top close to home in the Irish Champions Weekend 13th & 14th September Nursery Handicap. Duke said: “They’ve been running great, but I’ve had 11 seconds. I signed up for a course on the internet about how to survive in the wilderness!

“I’m delighted he’s won. It’s made a big difference gelding him. He just got there and the handicapper probably did a good job rating them. Hopefully we’ll find another day somewhere and we’ve been thinking about the nursery in Galway for a long time with him.”