O'Brien to field Mendelssohn at rearranged Kentucky Derby race night

"It will be the most-valuable race ever staged at Dundalk."

Barry Landy

Reporter:

Barry Landy

Email:

barry.landy@dundalkdemocrat.ie

O'Brien to field Mendelssohn at rearranged Kentucky Derby race night

Dundalk Stadium is to host the Kentucky Derby race night.

Champion trainer Aidan O'Brien's Mendelssohn is likely to run at Dundalk Stadium this coming Friday night, in the rearranged Kentucky Derby Race Night at the Dowdallshill venue. 

The Breeders' Cup Juvenile Turf winner is one of Aidan O’Brien’s nominations for the Kentucky Derby in May, and is likely to make his reappearance in the Listed Patton Stakes at Dundalk on Friday, originally scheduled for last Friday but postponed due to the weather. 

An additional fixture, originally pencilled in for Friday, has been pushed back for next Monday afternoon, March 12th.  

The feature race on the 32Red-sponsored eight-race card on Friday is the Patton Stakes, a Listed Race worth €75,000. The fixture will also contain a €25,000 All-Weather Championships Fast-Track Qualifier for fillies and mares.

The 32Red Patton Stakes is the penultimate leg of the ‘European Road to the Kentucky Derby’ points-based initiative that covers selected races in Ireland, Britain and France and will lead to the horse accumulating most points gaining entry to the famous Kentucky Derby, the first leg of American racing’s ‘Triple Crown’.

Regardless of whether he tops the points table, Ireland’s champion trainer Aidan O’Brien plans on running his Grade 1 Breeders’ Cup Juvenile Turf winner, Mendelssohn, at Churchill Downs in the Kentucky Derby on May 5.

O’Brien has had one previous runner in the Kentucky Derby, Master Of Hounds, who ran well to finish fifth in 2011.

"The ‘European Road to the Kentucky Derby’ is a fantastic series of races and we’re delighted that the 32Red Patton Stakes is forming part of it," Jim Martin, CEO at Dundalk Stadium, said. "It will be the most-valuable race ever staged at Dundalk and will be the feature on what should be an excellent night of racing.”

Aidan O’Brien’s other Patton Stakes entries are Group 2 winner Seahenge, Group 1 Dewhurst Stakes fourth Threeandfourpence, along with the maiden Spanish Point, a son of Frankel, and debutant Cliffs Of Dooneen for the mile contest.

Among the other possible runners in a race laced with quality are good recent Dundalk winners Blackgold Fairy, Princess Yaiza, Zihba and Ship Of Dreams along with the maiden Irish Minister.

Dignitaries from Churchill Downs and Arena Leisure, who are responsible for the All-Weather Championships, will attend Dundalk on Friday on what promises to be a superb night of racing and entertainment. The first race is due off at 5.30.