Gordon Elliott is all too familiar with Grade 1 glory on the racetrack, but for Yorton Stud based Stallion Blue Bresil it was his maiden Grade 1 winner.
The Ryanair Hurdle has been won in previous years by such stars as Moscow Flyer, Istabraq, Brace Inca, Hurricane Fly and Nicholas Canyon to name a few. Run over 2 miles on the last day of the Christmas Leopardstown Festival, comprising of 8 hurdles for 4 year olds and older.
Faugheen went into the race as the warm 2/11 favourite, winner of 8 Grade 1 races and only beaten the once by stablemate Nicholas Canyon, himself a multiple Grade 1 winner. ‘Faugheen the Machine’ as he is commonly known in his homeland adopted his customary pacesetting role - leading the 5 horse field. However, travelling down the backstretch it was clear that the wonder horse wasn’t running with the same exuberance that he has shown in his previous races. Paul Townsend, Faugheens jockey, wasn’t happy with the superstar and duly pulled him up approaching the 3rd last.
Now a bunched group running into the business end of the race, Mick Jazz and previous Grade 1 winner and stable companion of Faugheen, Cilaos Emery locked horns. The 6 year old Mick Jazz travelling the better of the quartet, relishing the battle in front of the packed Leopardstown crowd.
Under the drive of the talented Davy Russel, Mick Jazz found the better of Cilaos Emery to hold on to victory. In the process, giving Mick Jazz his first taste of Grade 1 glory; “I was expecting a big run from Mick Jazz because he ran such a lovely race in Fairyhouse (fifth in Hatton’s Grace Hurdle Gr1) when he didn’t stay after I travelled well into the straight.”
“He had to be tough to pass Cilaos Emery but, to be fair, he landed at the back of the last and he just wanted it a bit more. He’s a tough horse.” Source: SportingLife January 29th, 2017.
Gordon Elliott has always carried high hopes for the Blue Bresil gelding; entries for the Irish Champion Hurdle over 2m at Leopardstown on the first weekend of February and the Cheltenham Champion Hurdle at the festival in March represent this.
Mick Jazz has received a new rating of 155.
From everyone at Yorton Farm Stud, we wish to congratulate Mr George P Mahoney the owner, Gordon Elliott the trainer, Davy Russel the jockey and everyone else involved with the horse.
In addition, it was great to see the recent photos of Faugheen on the gallops at Willie Mullins’ yard this week and we hope to see him on the racetrack and winning races where he belongs.
Blue Bresil (by Smadoun x Miss Recif (Exit to Nowehere)) stands his third season at Yorton Farm Stud for a fee of £4,500 1st October. Other notable runners include Le Prezien, Ibis Du Rheu, Mont des Avaloirs and Tjongejonge among others.