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KEVIN PRENDERGAST Three of the best.

Pidget In 1972 a grey filly named Pidget was allocated 8st 2lb in the Madrid Free Handicap. Her trainer Kevin Prendergast, a former assistant to his legendary father Paddy, had yet to train a Classic winner. By the end of the year he had two in the bag, both achieved by Pidget, owned by the colourful Norman Butler.

The feat was particularly notable because it was achieved over 1m in the Irish 1,000 Guineas and 1m6f in the Irish St Leger. She also won the Pretty Polly at the Curragh. Given her reputation for being wayward, a trait that almost proved her undoing in the Irish St Leger, Prendergast's handling of her was exemplary.

Nebbiolo In 1960 Paddy Prendergast gave Ireland a first victory in the 2,000 Guineas at Newmarket with Martial. Sir Ivor and Nijinsky were the next two Irish winners of the race, and in 1977 Kevin Prendergast followed suit with Nebbiolo.

Unsold at 1,900gns as a yearling, the colt won the Gimcrack at two, but at Newmarket had the task of reversing the form of the Middle Park with Tachypous, and with The Minstrel also in opposition.

Under a spirited ride from Gabriel Curran, enjoying the greatest moment of his career, he beat Tachypous and the Vincent O'Brien-trained star. The pair clashed again in the Irish 2,000 Guineas, but Nebbiolo had to settle for third behind Pampapaul and The Minstrel.

Oscar Schindler The slow-maturing colt Oscar Schindler came into his own as a four-year-old in 1996, winning the Ormonde Stakes at Chester and the Hardwicke at Royal Ascot before gaining Group 1 honours when beating Key Change in the Irish St Leger.

He then finished third to Helissio in the Arc before ending the year with a disappointing run in the Melbourne Cup.

It had been a demanding campaign, and although he started the next season with a good run behind Dance Design in the Tattersalls Gold Cup, he had something to prove again after a poor effort in the Coronation Cup. After a warm-up in the Royal Whip, Prendergast produced him at the top of his form to win the Irish St Leger for the second time, beating the emerging Persian Punch, and providing an emotional triumph for owner Oliver Lehane. Alan Sweetman
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Title Annotation:Sports
Publication:The Racing Post (London, England)
Date:Sep 26, 2010
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