Friday, became a night the Galaxy Horse Racing Syndicate will never forget as Alfirak charged into Mokhald's hoof prints and won at Dundalk. Alfirak also gave Damian English his 50th career win. It is one year to the day that we had our first runner. Alfirak had run really well at Laytown and we were really pleased with him going into the race. Alfirak had done well since and we are very happy with him. On the figures, Alfirak had a really good chance here. Alfiralk wore cheek pieces tonight for the first time. He tends to be very relaxed in the stalls. The cheek pieces kept Alfirak alert and he got a good position early. Alfirak was a previous winner over course and distance. We would have been disappointed if Alfirak was not in the first three tonight. Alfirak despite having plenty going for him still had to go and do it, he was brilliant on the night and took the race apart.
Alfirak defied top-weight in the second division of the Christmas Party Nights At Dundalk Stadium Handicap. Successful over the course and distance in April, the Damian English trained gelding was last seen finishing third to Waqaas at Laytown. Fitted with cheekpieces for the first time this evening, the son of Tamayuz was sent off at 7/1 (from 5s on-course) in the colors of the Galaxy Horse Racing Syndicate. Soon in front under Rory Cleary, the chestnut victor was ridden from the two-furlong pole and kept on well from there, going on to score by three parts of a length. Path Of Silver (8/1) came out of the pack, but couldn't reel in the winner, and had to settle for second under Oisin Orr for Dick Brabazon. Bouquet Garni (10/1) was another length and a quarterback in third with Kevin Manning aboard this one for Edward O'Grady. Paved With Gold was sent off a well-backed 5/1 favorite (11s in early shows and from 7s on-course), and he finished sixth.
"I kind of expected that if I'm honest," said English."He ran a blinder on the beach over seven, which is just short of his best, and he just met the stream on the wrong stride when he was bang there."When he won here back in April I expected him to go on a do a lot more."He ran a blinder at Bellewstown when he got shuffled back and flew home to be second. Then it was soft ground in Galway, he was a little unlucky at Roscommon and we stepped him up to mile-and-two in Leopardstown."We haven't got everything right but we'll crack on now for a winter campaign and hopefully, he'll be able to progress up the ratings. He should be one we can have a bit of fun with up here."The loose horse was a blessing there as he does idle in front. We told Rory to sit second or third but he was clever, once he saw the loose horse he said 'this is going to take me a long way'."You could see him in the final stages that he was looking around a bit. He's still a big baby and hopefully, he can keep progressing."
The night itself was incredible the team celebrated long into the night at the Balscadden Inn which has become a special place for the Galaxy Horse Racing Syndicate. There are a few different people in Alfirak as opposed to Mokhalad. For many of these people, it was the first taste of success. We have had some difficulties with Alfirak, however, we never lost faith in him he has a lot of ability. Alfirak can go from strength the strength now. Damian and Craig English deserve massive credit for this. Alfirak had his regime changed after 16-8-18 at Leopardstown. The lads did brilliant and it was a tremendous piece of training and horse management. I would say this was my most emotional night in horse racing to date. This was a very special win and means the world to all involved in the Galaxy Horse Racing project. Alfirak became our third winner in 12 months dead.