Danny Tudhope gets call-up for Laurens in showdown with Alpha Centauri
Danny Tudhope is to take over from the sidelined PJ McDonald on Karl Burke's star filly Laurens in the Group 1 Coolmore Fastnet Rock Matron Stakes at Leopardstown on Saturday week.
McDonald, who has ridden the three-year-old on all eight starts of her career, misses out after fracturing both heels in a paddock fall from Westward Ho at Newcastle on Monday night and could be out for several weeks, joining John Dance on the sidelines as the owner has a broken leg.
Generally 12-1 second favourite for the Matron behind the odds-on Alpha Centauri, Laurens will be stepping back to a mile for the first time since May when she finished second to Billesdon Brook in the 1,000 Guineas at Newmarket.
After that, the daughter of Siyouni registered back-to-back Group 1 wins in France in the Prix Saint-Alary over 1m2f at Longchamp in May and topped that when landing the Prix de Diane over 1m2½f at Chantilly the following month.
It is a further boost for Tudhope, who is having a fabulous season. He is sitting in fifth in the jockeys' title race and has picked up the plum rides aboard Tasleet for William Haggas in the 32Red Sprint Cup and Roger Varian's Emmaus in the Superior Mile on Saturday.
Burke said: "Danny is a good jockey who is having a good season and is riding at the top of his game. He’s going over to Ireland anyway to ride Suedois and the plan is for him to ride one for us at Doncaster on St Leger day and then helicopter over to Leopardstown to ride in the Matron."
On the second day of Irish Champions weekend, Burke plans to run Havana Grey in the Group 1 Derrinstown Stud Flying Five Stakes at the Curragh for which he has booked Ben Curtis, the man sandwiched between Tudhope and McDonald in the jockeys' championship in sixth.
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