Riches heads four-strong Gigginstown Galway Plate challenge
Dual Grade 1-winning chaser Road To Riches is set to spearhead a four-strong challenge for Gigginstown House Stud in the €250,000 thetote.com Galway Plate next month, according to racing manager Eddie O'Leary.
Road To Riches, who won the Plate in 2014 and was pulled up when a well-backed 9-4 favourite last season, is likely to be joined in the feature chase of the seven-day festival by last year's victor Lord Scoundrel, Balko Des Flos and Devils Bride as Gigginstown seek a third win in four years.
O'Leary said: "We have kept four in training for the Plate and Road To Riches will have another go. He really enjoyed himself when he won the race a few years ago and he was not right when he ran in the race last year.
"Lord Scoundrel won the race last year and he will be back to defend his crown. Devils Bride is another that is highly likely to show up and he seemed to be coming back to form nicely at Down Royal last time. Balko Des Flos could be interesting off his rating. He was a good staying novice last season and could be an ideal type for the race."
'The race is always a thrilling one'
An extra €30,000 in prize-money has been added to the Plate, with total prize-money for the meeting boosted to a record level of more than €2,000,000.
Tim Higgins, chief executive of Tote Ireland, said: "We're delighted the Galway Plate will this year be worth €250,000. The race is always a thrilling one and the quality of the race really stands up especially when you look at the most recent winners."
The richest race at the meeting is the Guinness Galway Hurdle, which is worth €300,000. The festival runs from Monday, July 31 to Sunday, August 6, with the Plate taking place on Wednesday and the Hurdle the following day.