Baraweez camp confident of Galway treble
Brian Ellison believes Baraweez will “take all the beating ” as he bids for a third successive victory in the Irish Stallion Farms EBF “Ahonoora” Handicap at Galway on Sunday.
The six-year-old has for the past two seasons finished placed in the BMW Mile on the second night of the Festival before turning out just five days later to win this lucrative prize.
Ellison has again followed the same route, with Baraweez running with credit to finish fifth from a wide draw earlier the week.
The English trainer could not be happier with how his charge has recovered from those exertions.
He said: “When he won the race last year he was lame from the Tuesday until the Saturday and he still came out and won.
“This year he came out of the Tuesday race absolutely bouncing, so I think he’ll take all the beating.”
Baraweez spearheads a four-pronged Ellison assault on the seven-furlong contest.
Top Notch Tonto and Stipulate finished second and fourth in the BMW Mile, while Dream Walker was third in an extended one-mile handicap on Thursday.
“They’ve all run well already this week and deserve to take their chance,” said Ellison.
“With the ground drying up, that will probably suit Baraweez and Stipulate best.
“On faster ground, seven furlongs might just be sharp enough for Top Notch Tonto.
“Dream Walker ran well on Thursday so he’d have his chance, as well, but Baraweez might be the one.”
The Alistair Whillans-trained Pintura is another dangerous challenger from Britain.
The nine-year-old won this race four years ago and was runner-up in 2013 and 12 months ago.
Pintura’s former trainer Kevin Ryan is represented by Kelinni, with Pat Smullen a positive jockey booking.
Canary Row was fourth in last year’s renewal for Patrick Prendergast.
The six-year-old returns to Ballybrit in good form following a Limerick win and three consecutive placed efforts so far this season.
“He’s back on a rating he’s fairly nailed at, which is why Killian Leonard is riding him to take 7lb off his back,” said Prendergast.
“But he was fourth in the race last year, he’s been running consistently well all season and I’m sure he’ll run a good race.
“Any drop of rain they get will be a help to him.”