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Dublin: 4°C Wednesday 21 April 2021

Awtaad comes up trumps in 2000 Guineas as Air Force Blue disappoints again

Kevin Prendergast had a day to remember at the Curragh as his stable star denied Galileo Gold a Guineas double.

Chris Hayes celebrates aboard Awtaad.
Chris Hayes celebrates aboard Awtaad.
Image: Morgan Treacy/INPHO

TRAINER KEVIN PRENDERGAST had a day to remember at the Curragh when Awtaad made it four wins in a row when claiming the Tattersalls Irish 2,000 Guineas.

With Chris Hayes in the saddle, Awtaad kicked for home earlier than expected but had enough in the tank to see off Hugo Palmer’s mount Galileo Gold by two and a half lengths, ending hopes of an English and Irish 2,000 Guineas double for Frankie Dettori’s mount.

It ended a 40-year drought for Prendergast in the Classic, his last victory in the race coming through Northern Treasure.

The Sheikh Hamdan Al Maktoum-owned son of Cape Cross went off as third favourite (9/2) behind 5/4f Galileo Gold and Aidan O’Brien’s Air Force Blue (7/2) which disappointed yet again.

O’Brien had previously said that Air Force Blue was one of the best he had ever trained only for his star three-year-old to flop at Newmarket three weeks ago.

And it was deja vu for the Ballydoyle handler at the Curragh as Air Force Blue, once again under Ryan Moore, failed to challenge and finished at the back of the field.

A jubilant Prendergast couldn’t contain his joy after the race, saying Awtaad’s victory was “the best thing that’s happened me for years”.

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