Jody Townend, younger sister of Ireland’s champion jump jockey Paul Townend, was the star of the show on the first night of the Galway festival on Monday.

She landed the Connacht Hotel Amateur Riders Handicap on Great White Shark, only nine months after suffering serious back injuries.

The 21-year-old from Midelton brought the Willie Mullins-trained mare, a well-supported 8-1 shot, on the outside from well off the pace to land the feature race by a length and three-quarters.

Jody’s brother Paul also had a great week at Galway as he helped himself to six winners. Fast Buck did the business for Mullins and Paul Townend in the Listed Colm Quinn BMW Novice Hurdle on Tuesday, justifying 2-1 favouritism in the process, and the same combination teamed up for victories on Diamond Hill, Foveros, Wicklow Brave, Minella Beau and Yorkhill later in the week. 


Fethard-based Harry Kelly enjoyed his biggest win as a trainer on the penultimate day of the Galway Festival on Saturday when 12-1 shot Great Trango landed the €120,000 Galway Shopping Centre Handicap Hurdle under Philip Enright.

Great Trango had run earlier in the week in the Connacht Hotel Handicap under Jamie Codd but was drawn wide and got going too late but he made amends in spectacular fashion to give Kelly a day to remember.

The Saturday of the Galway festival was a memorable one for Aidan and Donnacha O’Brien as team Ballydoyle had three winners on the spin over the course of the afternoon, and in two of the races they supplied the first and second.

Only four went to post for the Shearwater Hotel 2-y-o maiden, won by 4-6 favourite Emperor Of The Sun who held off stable companion Delta Dawn. The most impressive performance was that of Lancaster House who bolted up on his somewhat belated debut in the 1m maiden, while top-rated Royal County Down just held off stable companion Mythologic in the nursery.


A total of 17 different jockeys were unable to win on One Cool Poet but Castletown native Billy Lee had the magic touch as the pair made history by winning three times in six days at Ballybrit.

Before Ballybrit, One Cool Poet had just one win to his name in five years but he hit a hot streak at the best possible time. His first win arrived on Monday night in the Caulfield Industrial Handicap, as he swooped late and fast under Billy Lee to beat Emphatic by a neck at odds of 7-1.

He returned two days later to land the Open Gate Pure Brew Handicap at 4-1 and the hat-trick was completed on Saturday when he stormed clear to win the McDonogh Capital Investments Handicap by five lengths at odds of 11-4. Having started the week rated 66, One Cool Poet is now set to receive a mark in the 90s.

What a turnaround for a horse who had not won since April of 2015 before turning up at Ballybrit last week. Lee was also successful on the Paddy Twomey-trained Raven’s Cry in the Foran Equine Irish EBF Auction Maiden at Galway on Sunday.

Mr Smith is best-known for being one leg of the famous Charles Byrnes treble at Roscommon in August 2016, has had a couple of years on the sidelines since, but he has come back very strongly this year and comprehensively landed the Kenny Galway Handicap Hurdle on Sunday.

Ridden by Adam Short, he was sent to the front before the fourth last and galloped his rivals into submission from there, scoring by ten lengths from Goodnightngodbless. He’s entered again at Roscommon on Tuesday at the equivalent meeting and chances are high that he will return there. 

Brynes also won the Guinness Time Flat Race at Galway on Thursday with the JP McManus-owned newcomer All Those Years who scored easily at odds of 4-7 under Derek O’Connor.


Gordon Elliott has made Galway Plate his own in recent years and Borice provided the Longwood trainer with a third victory in four years on Wednesday.

The 9-1 shot, owned by Simon Munir and Isaac Souede, flew up the long run-in under Luke Dempsey and had three and a quarter lengths to spare over British raider Black Corton at the line.


Happen overcame a slow start to finish second in the Saratoga Oaks for Aidan O’Brien on Friday but was no match for Concrete Rose, finishing four and three-quarter lengths behind the winner. Concrete Rose made all in the $695,000 contest, adding the second leg of the New York Racing Association’s inaugural Turf Tiara to her CV just one month after winning the Belmont Oaks.


Sligo – Thursday, August 8 (First Race 5.35); Leopardstown – Thursday, August 8 (First Race 5.15); Curragh – Friday, August 9 (First Race 5.15); Kilbeggan – Saturday, August 10 (First Race 5.35); Downpatrick – Sunday, August 11 (First Race 1.50); Tipperary – Sunday, August 11 (First Race 2.05).