Alenquer continued the dream run of trainer William Haggas as he caught High Definition in the dying strides to land the Tattersalls Gold Cup at the Curragh.
Aidan O'Brien’s one-time Derby favourite High Definition set off to make it a real test in the 10-furlong Group One and with three furlongs to run Ryan Moore kicked on and High Definition quickened clear.
For a few strides the giant colt looked like he had slipped the field, but market principals Lord North, State Of Rest and Alenquer began to close in and it was Frankie Dettori who led the way on Lord North.
His effort began to peter out, though, and Tom Marquand and Alenquer, with State Of Rest a length behind him, loomed with every stride.
While High Definition answered every call, inside the final 100 yards Marquand put his whip down and the 7-2 shot won going away by a neck, with the same back to State Of Rest.
The victory completed a memorable few days for Haggas, who won the Lockinge last weekend with Baaeed, had 10 winners through the week and also won the German Guineas on Sunday with Maljoom.
Marquand told RTÉ Sport: "That's my first ride in Ireland, I didn’t even know the way to the start an hour ago!
"This horse had a trip over to Dubai in the winter and he ran super over there and we had excuses.
"We always thought we would win a Group One over a mile and a half. Today being a mile and a quarter is hopefully a sign there are better things to come from him.
"He’s hardy and that was a great performance. He really had to dig deep there and it is a stiff last furlong.
"To be honest, I was always really happy. As playful as he might be, he really digs deep when he has to.
"It is wonderful for William Haggas and the team at home because he is not the easiest."
Maureen Haggas, the trainer’s wife and assistant, said: "He’s a very tough horse and he deserved to win a Group One.
"He was ridden beautifully by Tom. We were late arriving and he said 'please don’t make me go down first as I don’t know how to get to the start!’.
"He knows him really well and the horse is as hard as nails. The more you ask the more he gives.
"He’s always been a nice horse, but he keeps surprising us a bit. I think ground is important and it is on the slow side here.
"He won over a mile and a half at Ascot last year, but his top-class form is over a mile and a quarter.
"I thought he had a hard enough race today, but looking at him there is not a bother on him."
Alenquer (7-2) lands the Tattersalls Gold Cup at the Curragh for the red-hot William Haggas yard. pic.twitter.com/1i1c4Z67RG— RTÉ Racing (@RTEracing) May 22, 2022
Pearls Galore (8-11F) was made to pull out all the stops by Emphatic Answer in the Group Two Lanwades Stud Stakes but ultimately prevailed for Billy Lee and Paddy Twomey.
The five-year-old was twice a runner-up in Group One company last season and returned to action with a win in Listed company at Leopardstown.
Back up in grade the expectation was that she would outclass her rivals with only Joseph O'Brien’s Twilight Spinner challenging her in the market.
But it was Twilight Spinner’s stablemate Emphatic Answer who proved the toughest nut to crack, with Dylan Browne McMonagle riding a canny race from the front.
While Pearls Galore always looked likely to reel in the leader, it was only deep inside the final furlong that she eventually got on top.
The favourite was eventually going away on crossing the line, winning by a neck with Sh Boom a further two lengths away in third.
Zarinsk (8-1) showed plenty of determination to make just about all the running in the Tally Ho Stud Irish EBF Fillies Maiden.
There was not much form to go on among the 13 runners meaning plenty of guesswork was needed but the fact that the two with previous experience, Finsceal Go Deo and Tanaiyla, were ultimately well beaten suggests the front three, who pulled nicely clear, all look above average.
Lyons and Keane quickly doubled up when Pirate Jenny (5-2F) made a winning reappearance in the William Hill Acca Club Irish EBF Fillies Handicap.
Having just the third race of her life, the favourite looked well handicapped on a mark of 88 and a step up in class now beckons.
Keane made it a treble on the afternoon aboard the Sarah Lynam-trained Additional (9-1) in the Irish Stallion Farms EBF "Habitat" Handicap.
Second on his final two starts for Martyn Meade last season, the Night Of Thunder gelding again had to make do with the runner-up spot on his first start for his new connections at Naas last month.
Additional was strongly pressed by Mickey The Steel inside the last of six furlongs but fought him off to prevail by a neck.