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Puncher Clynch (centre) wins the Ballysax stakes at Leopardstown 18.04.2010

Puncher Clynch (middle): held on to beat At First Sight (right)

  PICTURE: Patrick McCann  

Puncher clinches Ballysax for Azamour

THE Group 3 P W McGrath Memorial Ballysax Stakes became the third major Classic trial this weekend to fall to a runner by a second-season sire, with Azamour's son Puncher Clynch holding on for a narrow victory.

On Saturday, Camacho sired Dubai Duty Free Stakes winner Puff and Arakan provided Greenham Stakes scorer Dick Turpin.

Trainer Jim Bolger

Jim Bolger: trains Ballysax winner

  PICTURE: Mark Cranham 

Puncher Clynch, trained by Jim Bolger for owner-breeders Ennistown Stud, edged out long-time leader At First Sight with favourite Mikhail Glinka finding a second wind, having earlier seemed to be outpaced, to run on into third.

Both the runner-up and third are Aidan O-Brien-trained sons of Galileo, who won the Ballysax Stud Stakes en route to Epsom and Irish Derby victories in 2001.

Puncher Clynch is the first Group winner sired by Azamour, a four-time Group 1-winning son of Night Shift who stands at the Aga Khan's Gilltown Stud in County Kildare.

Ennistown Stud bred Puncher Clynch, who is the first foal out of the eight-year-old Rainbow Quest mare Dance Troupe, a half-sister to smart dual-purpose performer Self Defense and to the dam of St Leger runner-up The Last Drop.

Dance Troupe's grand-dam is Irish 1,000 Guineas winner Sarah Siddons, ancestress of Group 1 winners Leggera and Princess Pati.

Puncher Clynch went through the ring at the 2008 Goffs Million yearling sale, where he was bought by Bolger – who also trained Saoirse Abu for Ennistown Stud – for €32,000.

More second-season sire success
Yet another second-season sire with a notable scorer this weekend was Dubawi, last year's leading freshman by number of individual winners.

Dubawi's son Worthadd justified 4-6 favouritism to win the Group 3 Premio Parioli at the Capannelle in Italy by a length from Martino Alonso colt Marshade.

Worthadd, who won the Listed Premio Gardone earlier this month, was bred in Ireland by Compagnia Generale out of Wigman, a Rahy half-sister to the dam of German Derby winner Dai Jin.

Worthadd is Dalham Hall Stud resident Dubawi's fifth Group winner after Cellarmaster, Makfi, Poet's Voice and Sand Vixen.




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