Trainer David O’Meara admits he was delighted with both Larchmont Lad and So Beloved as the pair finished first and second in the Friarstown Stud Minstrel Stakes at the Curragh on Saturday.
Aidan O’Brien’s St Patrick’s Day was the pre-race favourite at 11/8 but Ryan Moore could not get his charge on level terms and eventually finished fifth.
James Doyle was aboard Larchmont Lad and he dictated the pace from the outset and was never troubled as he kicked for home.
Stablemate So Beloved showed plenty of fight and courage to get the better of Fas in finishing second in the Group Two contest and O’Meara believes they both have a bright future.
“We were hopeful that both horses had a great chance coming over,” said O’Meara.
“I feel a small bit sorry for the owner of the second, Steve Barker, who is here, but someone had to win it and I’m glad Larchmont Lad did it for Cheveley Park as well.
“He was unlucky when he came over (to Leopardstown) last year and won and subsequently lost it in the stewards’ room.
“I’ll speak to Chris Richardson, who manages all the horses for Cheveley Park and see what he wants to do now.
“So Beloved is an eight-year-old and it’s a credit to him to still be running so well at this age. He’ll probably go to the Lennox (at Goodwood) next and have a crack at that.
“He ran a really good race there last year when fifth and not beaten far.”