Starspangledbanner Filly Strikes Late For Group 2 Glory
Aloha Star (2f Starspangledbanner - Zain Art, by Excellent Art) pounced late to take the Group 2 Airlie Stud Stakes at the Curragh on Sunday.
A maiden winner over five furlongs last time out, the Fozzy Stack-trained filly was given a patient ride by Chris Hayes on her first attempt over six furlongs. Taking closer order behind the leaders approaching the final furlong, she continued to improve under pressure and led close home to win by a head.
She claimed the scalp of impressive Listed winner Frenetic, with the front pair finishing a length and three quarters in front of recent Group 3 winner Mother Earth (Zoffany) in third.
Speaking after the race, Chris Hayes said, “The race went to plan today. She was a filly always crying out for that trip and hopefully she will improve. They went quick but it felt like a piece of work to me because I was able to tow in off them and let the two boys go at it. I had one crack at them.”
Trained by Fozzy Stack for D Keoghan and partners, Aloha Star was bred by Patrick Beirne Junior out of a half-sister to three-time listed winner Battalion. She becomes the second Stakes winner this month for Starspangledbanner following Dickiedooda’s success in the Listed Tipperary Stakes.