Joseph O’Brien’s Voce Del Palio
claimed an impressive victory in the lucrative Irish EBF Ballyhane Stakes at
Naas at Monday, writes Jack Lacey-Hatton.
The son of Bated Breath was considered an outsider for the feature contest, sent off at 28-1 under Declan McDonogh, but made a mockery of the price to claim the €300,000 prize - the biggest pot at the course.
Beaten twice at Leopardstown since picking up his maiden at Roscommon in May, few would have picked him out of the field of 24 juveniles.
But despite not getting the cleanest of runs from stall three, O’Brien’s colt won convincingly after stepping down to six furlongs for the first time.
“He's been a good horse and I thought his price was a bit disrespectful to him," said O'Brien after the win. “He got a great ride from Declan.
“This is a huge pot and it’s fantastic. The race is very well supported every year with such a big field & is always a very strong race.
“He's a solid horse, he was just dropping in trip which we weren't sure about, but he obviously handled it well. He was always going to get it well and was dropping back from Group-race company.
“He's in on at Tipperary on Friday, so we’ll see what the ground looks like and see how he comes through the race.
“But I'd say we'll probably go to the Curragh for the Sportsman race, another sales race.”
Elsewhere at Naas, Denmark made his mark with a mightily impressive debut in the mile maiden at Naas, with Aidan O’Brien now toying with an Epsom Derby tilt.
The Camelot Colt, a €440,000 purchase, had too much in the tank for second placed Warrior Lion, quickening with ease to win by three-and-a-quarter lengths.