Mid Winster claims Curragh cash for Andrew Slattery

Ben Coen steers 8-1 shot to tight verdict

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Mid Winster claimed a narrow victory in the opening Irish Stallion Farms EBF Maiden at the Curragh.

Having finished a promising sixth on her racecourse debut at Fairyhouse last month, Andrew Slattery’s filly was an 8-1 shot in the hands of 7lb claimer Ben Coen.

The daughter of Burwaaz raced on the far side of the track and while Nitro Boost lunged late nearer to the stands side, Mid Winster held on by a neck.

Carbon Fibre, the 9-4 favourite, was third.

Slattery said: “She’s a nice filly and she won despite being on the wrong side of the track.

“I told him (Coen) to come up the near side, but he obviously didn’t listen to me! The near side is a fierce advantage, but I suppose they broke and three of them went over there.

“We fancied her but yesterday morning she was in season and the vet told me not to run her for three or four days. I took a gamble and it paid off.

“She’s a very fast filly and five furlongs on soft ground would be up her alley, but she’d go on good to firm.

“We’ll see what mark we get after this, but she could be sold, probably to America, so we’ll see what happens.”

Optionality routed her rivals in the Anglesey Lodge Equine Hospital Irish EBF Maiden.

The Darren Bunyan-trained four-year-old finished last of 13 runners when thrown in at the deep end on her racecourse debut in a Listed event at Dundalk last October.

However, she had far less on her plate on her belated return to action and readily swept four lengths clear under Gary Carroll.

“She’s a smart little filly, but she was just weak on us last year,” said Bunyan.

“I didn’t run her in a Listed race first time out because I thought she was ordinary. She’s a filly that has always shown us a lot. Fair enough it was throwing her in at the deep end in a Listed race.

“She’ll improve a lot for today again and she’s a filly that will step back into Listed class before the end of the season.

“She has a little bit of a future sprinting, if she’s not sold.”

Lady Kaya was similarly dominant in the Loder Irish EBF Fillies Race.

The daughter of Dandy Man was the 13-8 favourite on the back of finishing third on her debut here in June and came home a full 10 lengths clear under Robbie Colgan.

Winning trainer Sheila Lavery said: “We knew we had something special, but until they go out and do it, you don’t know how special.

“I’ve been physically ill all day and that was just a bit awesome.

“She has loads of big entries and got the seven furlongs really easy there.

“I’d say the phone is going to be hopping. It was hopping the last time and it’s going to be really hopping this time. It would be a really brave route to hang on to her.

“I’ll pass it on and they can make the call. She’s class, that’s all I can say.”

Mid Winster claims Curragh cash for Andrew Slattery
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