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Curragh preview: Search For A Song ready to show true colours in Irish Leger Trial

Thu 13 Aug 2020

Classic heroine Search For A Song bids to open her account for the campaign in the Comer Group International Irish St Leger Trial at the Curragh.

The Moyglare Stud Farm-owned filly provided trainer Dermot Weld with an eighth victory in the Irish St Leger itself last September, leaving him one short of the record set by the great Vincent O’Brien.

Search For A Song made a fairly uninspiring return to action in the Mooresbridge Stakes in June, and was then swiftly pulled up on her next start in the Munster Oaks at Cork after stumbling badly on the first bend.

However, her third behind the top-class Magical in last month’s Tattersalls Gold Cup was a huge step in the right direction – and connections are looking forward to going back up in trip on Friday before a likely defence of her Irish Leger crown next month.

Kris Weld, assistant to his father, said: “She was third last time in a Group One, and is back up to her Leger-winning distance.

“She’s in good form. We’ll see how she gets on Friday – hopefully she’ll be back at the Curragh on Irish Champions Weekend.”

Search For A Song’s nine rivals in the one-mile-six-furlong Group Three include Aidan O’Brien’s pair of Delphi and Monument Valley, Joseph O’Brien’s Master of Reality and the Willie Mullins-trained Micro Manage.

Group Three honours are also up for grabs on the same card in the Irish Field Celebrating 150 Years Royal Whip Stakes.

The highest-rated of seven declared runners is Jessica Harrington’s Leo De Fury, who won the Mooresbridge Stakes before finishing fifth in the Tattersalls Gold Cup.

Aidan O’Brien is represented by Irish 2,000 Guineas and Tattersalls Gold Cup fourth Armory – one of four three-year-olds in the field along with Joseph O’Brien’s Degrave, the Noel Meade-trained Helvic Dream and Sinawann from Mick Halford’s yard.

The latter was a creditable sixth in the Irish Guineas on his seasonal bow, before landing the Group Three Amethyst Stakes at Leopardstown.

“He’s in good form, and we think stepping up from a mile to a mile and a quarter will suit him,” said Halford.

“He’s been working well. He has a bit to find on ratings – but he’s still lightly raced, and there’s improvement in him, hopefully.

“He’s getting stronger. Good ground would be lovely for him, and if there is a bit of an ease it wouldn’t worry me.

“We’ll see how he gets on – it will tell us where we’re going for the rest of the season.”

Joseph O’Brien also runs Numerian, with Weld’s Rakan completing the line-up.

The Ger Lyons-trained Frenetic bids to bounce back from a couple of narrow defeats in the Listed Holden Plant Rentals Curragh Stakes, with O’Brien senior’s Chief Little Hawk among her eight opponents.

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