Jessica Harrington is concerned the likely testing conditions might catch out Whirling Dervish when the promising colt makes his seasonal debut at Cork on Saturday.
The son of Camelot won the second of his two starts in great style by six lengths over nine furlongs at Tipperary in October, and holds several lofty early-closing entries, including the Queen’s Vase, the King Edward VII Stakes and the Irish Derby.
Harrington reports Whirling Dervish to be ready to start the campaign and he is set to take on three rivals in the Cork Racecourse Rated Race at the Mallow venue.
“The ground might be a bit heavy for him and he might get a bit tired on it, but he’s got to start somewhere and we’re happy with him at home,” said the County Kildare handler.
Bandua has race-fitness on his side, but victory over the course and distance last month means Dermot Weld’s charge has to give 7lb to Whirling Dervish.
The other two runners, Dawn Hoofer and Marlborough Sounds, each receive a further 8lb. Weld saddles a promising type in Jewel Maker in the Irish Stallion Farms EBF Maiden over seven furlongs.
The son of Invincible Spirit shaped well on his debut when runner-up at Naas in October and holds an entry in the Tattersalls Irish 2,000 Guineas.
Weld gives Siminya a second racecourse appearance in the Newmarket Fillies Maiden over an extended mile and a quarter, three weeks after the daughter of Holy Roman Emperor was a close third of five at Leopardstown.
She led early lost her place three out and ran on again until tiring close home.
Aidan O’Brien runs Dabirsim’s half-sister Queen Iseult and Flattering, who is closely related to Lucky Kristale, while John Oxx saddles a promising type in Comeragh Haze.