Backbench Blues makes a splash at Leopardstown
Report: Leopardstown, Friday
Nijinsky Stakes (Listed), 1m3f, 3yo that have not won a Group 1 or Group 2 race
BACKBENCH BLUES coped with treacherous conditions at Leopardstown best of all to register his fourth win from six starts.
The meeting went ahead after an earlier inspection following heavy rainfall and the nine who took their chance were splashing through the puddles from the off.
Favourite Tower Rock was sent into an early lead under Joseph O'Brien but he was scrubbed along from over three furlongs out and soon dropped back through the field.
Backbench Blues took up the running as the pacesetter faded and despite hanging violently to the right in the closing stages he scored by three and three-quarter lengths for Jessica Harrington under Fran Berry at 10-1.
Macbeth finished second with Karatash third. The Aidan O'Brien-trained pair of Tower Rock, the 2-1 favourite, and Frontier were among three horses virtually pulled up in the home straight.
Kate Harrington, daughter of the winning trainer, said: "He is a typical Big Bad Bob, tough and hardy. I'd imagine he'd go for another Listed race or a Group 3 now."
Berry added: "Even when I pulled my whip through he kept going right. I think it was a combination of the open space and the gate being over there."
Tower Rock was subsequently found to be lame.