10 August 2017

A return to form for the Dermot Weld stable saw EZIYRA (IRE) take Tuesday’s feature at Cork, the Group 3 Give Thanks Stakes over a mile and a half. A winner at Group 3 level at two, she was Stakes-placed twice this season, including when finishing third to Enable in the Irish Oaks last time out. Pat Smullen took the ride once again, riding her to chase the leaders and made a challenge in the straight, disputing the lead from before the two pole. Asserting soon after, she was ridden clear inside the final furlong to win by two and a half lengths, as Bloomfields (IRE) stayed on to complete a 1-2 for Kildangan Stud sire Teofilo (IRE).

Bred out of the Dubai Destination mare Eytarna (IRE), the Aga Khan homebred is a half-sister to Listed winner Eshera (IRE). Eytarna (IRE) was Listed-placed herself and is a half-sister to four Group 1 winners, namely Ascot Gold Cup hero Enzeli (IRE), dual top-level scorer Ebadiyla (IRE), Moyglare Stud Stakes winner Edabiya (IRE) and the Queen’s top-class mare Estimate (IRE).

The previous race, the Listed Platinum Stakes over a mile, produced a similarly impressive winner in the shape of SIR JOHN LAVERY (IRE). The Aidan O’Brien-trained colt was sent off favourite under Seamie Heffernan and settled towards the back of the field, waiting until the straight to make his move, where he made progress approaching the two furlong pole. Taking the lead a furlong later, he stayed on well to win by an easy three lengths, while Dermot Weld’s filly Rose De Pierre (IRE) claimed runners-up honours.

Galileo (IRE)’s Stakes winning tally now stands at 251, creeping closer to his sire Sadler’s Wells’ record of 294. SIR JOHN LAVERY (IRE) is one of two black-type performers out of Group 3 winner Race For The Stars, who also finished a length and a half behind Ed Evie (IRE) in the Group 1 Matron Stakes . Her full-brother Zulu Chief was a Group 2 performer, while half-brother Hawk Wing won three Group 1’s. Other siblings include the dam of Grade 1 Canadian International Stakes winner Thornfield.

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