Tote Inside Track – Darren Bunyan – September 30th


Last Weekend

We were at the Curragh last weekend to introduce a lovely 2yo by Exceed and Excel called Low Latency. We were unlucky that the heavens opened close to race time and turned the ground heavy, which was totally against him. He ran an absolute blinder to finish 3rd in those conditions. Throughout the race he showed a lot of class to travel the way he did and it was only the ground that beat him. He’s a horse I love. He’s still immature and we’ll give him plenty of time to develop over the winter. He’s an exciting prospect for next year and I can’t wait to see him on his favoured good ground. 

Low Latency At The Curragh Last Sunday. Photo: David Betts.

Goffs Sales This Week

Viewing A Yearling At Goffs This Week. Photo: David Betts.

The Irish yearling sales season shifted up a gear this week with The Orby Sale at Goffs. As ever it was difficult to buy the nicer horses. The average price was up on the year and the clearance rate was good at 84%.

I purchased 2 very exciting colts on the 1st Day of The Sportsman Sale which followed on Thursday. I was absolutely delighted to secure them since I considered them to be the nicest 2 horses in that sale. The 1st was a lovely athletic Colt by Teofilo. I loved him from the minute I first set eyes on him and in addition to being such an impressive individual he has lots to recommend him on his page.

The 2nd was another particularly impressive colt by prolific sire of top class stakes horses Pivotal. Our colt is a smashing individual and also has lots of black type on his dam’s side. It was one of those days where I couldn’t possibly have been any happier with the day’s work. Next stop will be the yearling sales at Newmarket as we reach the half way point of our 2 year plan of putting together a high class team of 2yo’s and 3yo’s. Our 3yo team next season will be based around Hit The Bid, Low Latency, Mister Trader and a number of other nice horses that I’m taking my time with this year with next season in mind. I’m also particularly happy with our yearling purchases so far and I expect they’ll give us a stronger hand in the 2yo division than we’ve had so far. You can follow our progress on our website

This Weekend

It’s one of my favourite weekend’s of the year when the racing world’s attention shifts to the Prix De L’Arc de Triomphe meeting in Paris. Due to the ongoing redevelopment work at its usual home Longchamp this year’s meeting will be run at picturesque Chantilly.

Prix De L’Abbaye

The Prix De L’Abbaye is always one of the most exciting and competitive sprints of the year. One of our blog horses to follow has been Mecca’s Angel, the 6 time stakes winning daughter of Dark Angel. She’s a wonderful mare and on her last run she was impressive in winning the Group 1 Nunthorpe for the second year running. Previous comments from connections suggest she is at her best when getting her toe in and as long as the ground isn’t on the firm side I think she’ll take all the beating. This is likely to be her final racecourse appearance as a broodmare career beckons for her from the end of this season.

MECCA'S ANGEL with P Mulrennan wins  in Nunthorpe stakes at York 19-8-16.
MECCA’S ANGEL with P Mulrennan wins in Nunthorpe stakes at York 19-8-16.

Personally, I’d love to see Ardad win for one of my owners, Mr Abdullah Saeed Al Naboodah.  He’s a man who has a great understanding of horses and is a real pleasure to train for. It’s certainly a big challenge for the 2yo Ardad taking on the older sprinters. The last time a 2yo won this was in 1978. Ardad’s win in the Group 2 Flying Childers Stakes on his last run was given a timely boost when 3rd placed The Last Lion went on to win the Group 1 Middle Park Stakes on his next outing. It would be an amazing achievement should he win on Sunday and I’ll be cheering him on in the hope he can give his owner a much deserved success at the highest level.

Ardad – Frankie Dettori wins The Pepsi Max Flying Childers Stakes (Group 2) Doncaster 9/9/16. ©

Prix De L’Arc

The centre piece of Sunday’s card is the world’s richest turf race the  Prix De L’Arc and as ever it looks a fantastic race. Our blog has done well this season following Harzand and this dual Derby winner is undoubtedly one of the classiest horses in the line up. He’s looking to bounce back after picking up an injury in running in the Irish Champion Stakes and I’d imagine connections will have been relieved to avoid a wide draw. At this level you need everything in your favour and my confidence in him is tempered a little by the ground. Unless they get some rain to put it on the easy side by race time you’d have to be a little concerned.

Harzand and Pat Smullen before “The Quipco Irish Champion Stakes” GR1 at Leopardstown – Alain Barr – 10.09.2016

Postponed has been flawless in winning his 4 races this year and looks worthy of his place at the head of the betting. He has fared better in the draw than the classy Japanese challenger Makahiki and the consistent Found. Whether you have a bet or not it will be a wonderful race to sit back and enjoy.

Ryder Cup

There’s certainly a wonderful weekend of sport ahead and we’ll also be cheering on Darren Clarke’s European team in the Ryder Cup. The bookies are making the Americans strong favourites but it wouldn’t be the first time we’ve seen an upset in this fantastic biennial clash with the US. Hopefully, the Europeans can keep themselves  in contention heading into Sunday’s singles and then as we’ve seen in the past anything is possible on the final day.

Have a great weekend and enjoy the sport!


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