8 winners with local connections – Week 15 8th-14th April 2013
The shy bird of our woodlands
From Potato Famine – to ‘Famine-busing’ Potato
A Raven Falls
Dead Poets Society
One ‘dig out’ that did not come from Europe
Brat alainn na hÉireann
Week 14, 1st-7th April 2013 – Treble for O’Meara on the flat
Bliain na Gaeilge 2013
Time to celebrate…
Abuse – Acceptable when it is “routine”?
Fermoy, Killeagh and Castletownroche locals recorded no fewer than 8 winners between in the UK last week, thus keeping this writer very busy.
O’MEARA’S ‘MOVE IN TIME’ TAKES DONCASTER FEATURE
Fermoy trainer David O’Meara’s Nawton yard is firing on all cylinders again this season. Striking while the iron is hot is an old adage and if adopted in the racing game, it can pay huge dividends. O’Meara’s ability to pick up horses from other trainers and improve them is beyond doubt.
We again were witness to this at Doncaster last Saturday, when O’Meara’s Move In Time (7/1) took the feature six furlong Bet365 Handicap (C2), under jockey Daniel Tudhope.
With a prize fund of £50,000 and the 100 rated upper limit removed, this race was always going to attract a good field of sprinters. And so it proved with 20 runners going into battle over a straight six furlongs.
The key to many of these races is a good draw in and around the speed horses. Move In Time had that prime draw in 18 and with all the pace coming up the centre, he got a nice tow into the race from the outset. Making smooth headway at the two furlong marker, Tudhope sat motionless until asking his mount for more effort at the one furlong marker. While those around him wilted, Move In Time duly responded to his jockey’s urgings, until the final two challengers were seen off. He stayed on strongly for a three quarter of a length win from Shropshire (12/1), with Hitchens (14/1) back in third.
Looking ahead of his handicap mark (95), even after a 10Lb rise for his win at Musselburgh, Move In Time could now be upped in class to Group level. O’Meara has more options now with his charge, showing he is as effective over six furlongs as five.
O’Meara said, “This proves he’s versatile trip-wise over five or six, the jury is still out over which is his best distance. I don’t know where he’ll go next, we’ll see what the handicapper does, but I have entered him in the Palace House.”
Another O’Meara inmate, Sandy Lane (5/2f) was entered up at Catterick on Wednesday last. Having his first start for the trainer in this Class 5 handicap, he was well supported in the betting market to see off his market rivals. Again ridden by Tudhope, he proceeded to make all the running and win in what looked an effortless canter. The winning margin of six lengths could easily have been doubled. This son of Elusive City can now expect a huge hike in the weights after making a mockery of his lowly rating of 68.
Bought for 12,000gns at the sales recently, his owner Seamus Laffan went on to say, “We bought him at the sales in February and he’s a nice horse. This was a good start.”
RUNNING IN THE FAMILY
Killeagh jockeys and brothers, Barry and Liam Keniry, had three winners between them last week. Starting with jump jockey Barry, we head to Kelso on Monday week last. Riding Jack The Gent (9/2) for Middleham based trainer George Moore in a 2m 1F Handicap Chase, Keniry was again seen to good effect on this giant son of Anshan.
Making light of top weight of 11-12, Jack The Gent led at the second fence, made the rest and was never sighted by another rival for an empathic 10 length win. Jumping well apart from crashing through the fifth last, this horse can progress further again and may have more in the locker with the ground now drying out.
Moore said, “Jack The Gent loves this good ground. We’ll keep him going and might go for a novice chase if I can find a suitable one.” Jack The Gent is entered this Friday at Ayr in a Novice Handicap Chase.
Flat jockey, Liam Keniry recorded a double last Wednesday at two different tracks. His first win came at Lingfield aboard Desert Strike (5/1) in a Claimer for trainer, Conor Dore. Taken down early to post, this quirky son of Bertolini made all under Keniry for a comfortable two length win. Allowed an easy time in front, this was Desert Strike’s 117th start and his 11th win from 69 starts on the all weather.
Keniry said, “It’s the first time I’ve ridden him, but Conor said he really fancied him. He was very quick into his stride and I got a breather into him at halfway. When I kicked off the bend I knew they would struggle to catch me.”
Moving onto Kempton Park that evening and Liam teamed up with Kingsclere trainer, Andrew Balding on King Muro (7/2)in the three year old Maiden. King Muro was upped in distance since his last run and had plenty going for him.
Keniry again got a soft lead in front and confident this son of Halling would get the extra distance, he rode him accordingly. Challenged and passed inside the final furlong by High Time Too (20/1), Keniry’s mount kept straight, unlike his counterpart and he got back up to win by half a length at the line. The second seemed to throw the race away by failing to go through with her effort by wandering all over the track, but Keniry was having none of it.
This was Liam’s 20th winner of the season.
DEJA VU FOR HARDING ON MOJOLIKA
Castletownroche jump jockey Brian Harding was again on the mark with Mojolika (15/8f) for trainer Tim Easterby at Carlisle. Following up on the pair’s course and distance success 10 days earlier, Mojolika was sent to post favourite for this Class 4 handicap hurdle.
Facing his old rival Yorkist (15/2), who again ensured a strong gallop from the front, Harding held up this 5 year old son of Motivator in rear. Getting outpaced at halfway, Mojolika made headway before the third last and looked in trouble turning for home when Yorkist kicked clear. Harding didn’t panic though and devoured the ground up the Carlisle hill to catch Yorkist between the last two flights. Jumping the last well in command, Mojolika went on to win by 12 lengths at the line. Yorkist held onto second with Tweedo Paradiso (5/1) a further 14 lenghts back in third.
Looking a very progressive hurdler, the handicapper will now have his say and it remains to be seen if he can complete the hat trick. Rated 108 before this win, life may be a lot tougher off a new rating nearer 120.
Harding ever the optimist said, “He likes that better ground and hopefully he’ll improve again.”
He is now looking a very cheap buy at 2000gns. This was Brian’s 27th winner of the season.
BEST OF THE REST
Another Castletownroche native, trainer Jonjo O’Neill, added a further two winners to his season’s tally of 88. His Oscar Fortune (11/4) winning a bumper on only his second start for the yard at Wetherby. This former Boulta point-to-point winner looks a nice staying prospect and he duly obliged under Tony McCoy, when beating Deadly Sting, trained by Fermoy native and Killaloe based Ronnie O’Leary. Oscar Fortune, a 5 year old son of Fermoy based stallion Oscar, is a horse for everyone’s notebook.
O’Neill’s second winner was again ridden by McCoy. See U Bob (11/4f) taking a good Class 3 handicap chase over 2m 7f at Stratford. Formerly trained by Paul Nolan in Wexford, this 10 year old Bob Back gelding wasn’t winning out of turn and still looks well handicapped on his Irish form. This was his 7th win under rules from 35 starts and he looks one to follow up on this performance.
A special mention for Cloudy Lane who was retired recently. He will no doubt hold a special place in Donald McCain’s heart, being his first runner and first Cheltenham winner. He was also ridden by Castletownroche amateur jockey, Richie Harding on his last seven starts, which included a Foxhunters Chase win at Aintree in 2012. Let’s hope he and 2011 Grand National winner, Ballabriggs, who was also retired, enjoy lazy days in green pastures.
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