Kerry National candidate Peregrine Run set for hurdle prep on ground he likes
Peregrine Run reverts to hurdles in the Irwins Bakeries Hurdle (6.40) at Down Royal on Friday as a prep for the Guinness Kerry National at Listowel on September 12, with trainer Peter Fahey making the most of the decent ground the eight-year-old relishes.
A four-time winner over hurdles, Peregrine Run recorded his fourth chase success at Killarney last week, when fitted with blinkers for the first time.
"The blinkers certainly sharpened him and he wears them again," Fahey said. "He came out of the Killarney race very well and this looked a suitable opportunity for him before, ground permitting, we head for Listowel."
Peregrine Run won four in a row over hurdles in 2016 when his victories included a Grade 2 novice event at Cheltenham. Friday's race will be his first over hurdles since March 2017 and his first attempt over three miles.
"He's very well and has had a light campaign this year. Hopefully, all will go well and then we can sit and hope that it isn't soft at Listowel," Fahey added.
Peregrine Run's rivals include veteran chaser Road To Riches, who will be running over hurdles for the first time in more than five years, Woodland Opera, a winner over 2m4f at Kilbeggan three weeks ago who has never been this far, and De Plotting Shed, who is also reverting from fences.
Road to success
A winner of a maiden over the trip at the Galway festival, Highway To Success represents Gordon Elliott in the seven-furlong nursery, the most valuable prize on the Curragh's Friday card (5.20).
Declan McDonogh, who won on the son of Fast Company at Galway, again partners the Nick Bradley Racing Club-owned colt and Elliott said: "Highway To Success came out of Galway very well.
"He's in good order and as long as the ground doesn't dry out much he should be fine."
Highway To Success is one of four winners in the eight-runner line-up with the Aidan O'Brien-trained maiden Cardini heading the weights.
Course specialist seeking fourth Curragh win
Gopsies Daughter has shown a liking for five furlongs at the Curragh and the Denis Hogan-trained seven-year-old will be seeking a fourth win over the course and distance in Friday's finale (7.50).
Successful on her last two visits to the track, Gopsies Daughter has gone up 6lb for her most recent win and Hogan said: "It's a slight worry that it's only a week since her last race but she seems fresh and well.
"She loves the course and the trip and we're very hopeful of a big run and that she might go in again."
Killian Leonard, who has ridden the daughter of Captain Rio to three of her five wins, again claims 3lb and the mare's 14 rivals include the Michael Grassick-trained Verhoyen, who ran her to half a length last time.
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