King Cuan has proven a real moneyspinner for Paddy Twomey this season and bagged another big pot in the Irish EBF Auction Series Race Final at Naas.
Since finishing fourth when a beaten favourite on his debut, he has subsequently won at Cork before landing the Goffs Sportsman’s Challenge at this venue.
Chasing the €70,800 first prize, Billy Lee always looked in command on the 4-5 favourite and while the 100-1 outsider Duplantis closed to within a head, the post came in time.
“The fun he’s after giving that syndicate has been brilliant. That roar you wouldn’t usually get on the Flat and it’s a nice welcome back,” said Lee.
“The race didn’t go as smooth as I wanted – I thought they would go a bit more of a gallop and I was trapped wide. I just tried to keep it as simple as possible.
“I knew I was probably on the best horse in the race, he’s cruised there and picked up to win well. He was just getting a bit lonely in front and on that ground you are never going to be ultra impressive.
“He gets seven well which opens up options for next year. He’s a game little horse.”
Jessica Harrington is enjoying a good end to the season and her Curvature (13-2) made every yard of the running in the Listed Irish Stallion Farms EBF Garnet Stakes.
Sent into an early lead by Garry Carroll, the three-year-old had gone close in a similar event at Listowel last time out and proved a determined filly.
William Haggas’ raider Good Gracious burst out of the pack to challenge but could never quite get on terms.
“She loves that if she can get onto the lead and she’s learning now,” said Harrington. “She was too fresh in Listowel as she hadn’t run for a while but today she was really good and it’s great to get that big black type.
“She was only cruising in front but it’s a long way home here in the straight and she kept on really well.”
Dancing Tango came from almost last to win the second Listed race on the card, the Irish Stallion Farms EBF Bluebell Stakes.
Joseph O’Brien’s other runner Goodie Two Shoes looked to be going best two furlongs out but faded badly.
Azazat took over at the head of affairs but deep inside the final furlong Dylan Browne McMonagle brought the 13-2 chance with a real rattle to win going away.
“Things didn’t really go to plan out of the gates. I was in first and in there a long time and I’d planned to be in the first quarter if possible. We knew she stays well and she handles this ground,” said McMonagle.
“I was a little bit sluggish away and the pace was strong for the first five or six furlongs even for the grade we were in. I let her find her feet and I knew she would come home well, it was just a matter of getting a clean run.
“She’s an improving filly and deserves her success in this grade and was really tough today.”
Prairie Dancer (12-1) then just held off Stoke The Fire to give O’Brien and McMonagle a double in the Colm White Bookmaker November Handicap.