Make A Challenge warms up for Flying Five with cosy success at Navan

Sat 29 Aug 2020

All roads lead to the Group One contest on Irish Champions Weekend for Make A Challenge, although it wasn't all plain sailing for him at Navan. Watch reaction from Joe Doyle in our report.

Make A Challenge made a swift return to action pay dividends by securing back-to-back Listed wins in the Abergwaun Stakes at Navan.

Denis Hogan’s charge hit the target at the Curragh last Saturday and reappearing just seven days later, he again took gold under Joe Doyle.

Sent off the 4-9 favourite in a contest saved over from Tipperary’s cancelled meeting on Thursday, Make A Challenge was not the best away but he travelled smoothly through the five-furlong heat before Doyle let him edge in front of Elzaamone inside the distance.

However, Shane Foley was stoking up Urban Beat to great effect on the stands side and he looked as though he might just poke his head in front approaching the line, only for Make A Challenge to push on again and win cosily by half a length. Schroders Mistake was third.

Make A Challenge is now set to step up to Group One level for the Flying Five Stakes on Irish Champions Weekend next month.

Doyle said: “He was as good as ever there. He got a bit upset in the stalls, he got the blindfold off and it resulted in him jumping a bit slow, but it made no odds in the end and I didn’t have to be too hard on him.

“That was to get a blow into him for the Flying Five, so it’s all systems go and we’re looking forward to it.

“The more rain the better for us. Hopefully we turn up on the day and I think we have a squeak.”

Galileo Chrome continued his progression with a stylish win in the Irish Stallion Farms EBF Yeats Stakes at Navan.

Joseph O’Brien’s colt had won his two previous outings this season and handled the step up in trip and class with aplomb.

Ridden with ultimate confidence by Shane Crosse, fresh from a Group Three win on Thundering Nights for O’Brien a day earlier, the 2-1 favourite never looked in any trouble.

His wins at the Curragh and Leopardstown this season had come over 10 furlongs, so he had questions to answer stepping up to a mile and five furlongs in testing ground.

Watch how Galileo Chrome scored at Navan on Saturday

However, he cruised through the race before shooting clear on entering the final furlong, beating Emperor Of The Sun by five lengths.

“Shane said he’s an absolute dream as he’s switched off over that trip,” said assistant trainer Brendan Powell.

“He said he quickened up lovely and when Gavin (Ryan, on the second) came up his inside, he thought he was in trouble for a minute, but he said he just had a little look around in front.

“I know he took it up a long way out in Leopardstown, but he’s still a big baby. The way he galloped away in the last half-furlong made a big difference.

“Please God, he’s a proper horse. He’s got a massive future. He’s answered a lot of questions today, he stays well and he has the speed to go a mile-and-a-quarter as well.

“Would he be a Leger horse? That’s completely up to Joseph and the owners. He’s going in the right direction and the world is his oyster at the minute.

“He’s got everything to him – he’s got size, power and he relaxes as well. When you’ve got all that together, you’d think he’s going to be a good horse.”

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