Irish/World Racing Round-Up - 28/01/2019

Irish/World Racing Round-Up - 28/01/2019

The world's richest horse race - The Pegasus World Cup took centre stage on Saturday night, where the Breeders Cup Dirt Mile victor City Of Light took home the $9 million purse.

Ridden by Javier Castellano, the 5yo was always particularly prominent and led four furlongs from the finish. Cutting every bend with the assistance of the inside rail, he fought off the challenge of Dallas Stewart's Seeking The Soul, with the Breeders Cup Classic winner Accelerate - on what was his final racecourse appearance, back in third.

Frankie Dettori finished last but one on the Mexican colt Kukulkan.

Elsewhere at Gulfstream, Wayne Lordan represented Aiden O'Brien with a couple of rides: firstly Hunting Horn in the Grade Three W.L McKnight Stakes finishing a good third given the issues he had in running, before jumping aboard last years' Ribblesdale Stakes winner at Royal Ascot Magic Wand, who finished an even better second, in the Grade One World Cup Turf Invitational Stakes.

On Sunday, the action resumed at Sha Tin in Hong Kong, where there were typical wins for top names Hugh Bowman and Zac Purton - the latter who bagged a treble on the card.

There was also a victory for Silvestre De Sousa aboard Gameplayer Emperor in a Class 3 on the All-weather track, and it will not be too long until we see the Brazilian back in UK territory.

Oisin Murphy landed a five-timer in Tokyo on Sunday, with an eyecatching success on Akira Murayama's Copano Kicking in the Grade Three Negishi Stakes the pick of the bunch.

Ireland had two quality cards over the weekend, as they continue their build-up towards the Irish Gold Cup Festival next weekend.

On Saturday, we saw a sparkling performance from Henry De Bromhead's Honeysuckle in the Grade 3 Mares Novice Hurdle, which extended her unbeaten run to four.

She looks bound for the Mares Novice at the Cheltenham Festival, along with Real Steel who is destined to head perhaps for the JLT at Prestbury Park, after making no mistakes this time in a Beginners Chase at Fairyhouse.

Time will tell there, whilst the word 'Dreams' seemed to be the common theme at Naas on Sunday.

Dream Conti landed the maiden for Noel Meade and Sean Flanagan - both of whom continuing in fine form, whilst the Willie Mullins-trained Ballyward denied Henry De Bromhead another success of the weekend - this time with Chris's Dream.

However, the feature of the day was the Limestone Lade Hurdle, a Grade 3 contest over two-miles, where Gavin Cromwell's Espoir D'Allen can certainly be dreaming of Champion Hurdle success in six weeks time, after a relatively smooth success.

Wicklow Brave and Tombstone were next home.