Clonmel Track - Sunday, February 27
A number of stunning times were posted on a red-hot circuit and the star of the evening was the superbly consistent Greenane Bingo which having a first run over the 550 trip in the The Red Mills Getting Out Race went off the 6/4 market leader and made all the running to defeat market rival Mines A Pint by two and a half lengths in a brilliant 29.85 just four spots outside the track record. Owned and trained by one of the trackâ€™s longest serving patrons, Tony Nugent, the son of Honcho Classic and Ambience Lady was gaining his tenth career success. Moreton Mercury finished in third place a length in arrears of the runner-up.
Race 1 - The evening got off to a cracking start with an A5 contest which saw the 2/1 chance Exchange Student, on his first-ever run, clock an amazing 28.65 for Golden trainer Ronny Wuyts and Begium based owner Karin Rutten. Ardera Tara led from traps but Exchange Student a daughter of College Causeway and Droopys June took control down the back straight and stormed clear to defeat that early leader by eight lengths with Immovable Object five lengths further back in third place.
Race 2 - The odds-on Kilmoney Paul (Droopys Corelli-Arderin Gift) came in as a reserve in the red jacket and after Cauldron Bidz had trapped best Kilmoney Paul soon gained control and ran on well to account for Dream On Billy and Society Captain by a length and the same in 16.37. The winner which boasts an almost 50% strike rate was recording his fourteenth success for owner/trainer Jerry Oâ€™Sullivan of Carrigaline.
Race 3 - Galleypot Lane easy to back at 5/2 in the face of strong support for the 6/4 jolly Avalon Lucky appreciated the drop in grade with an impressive four length win over Rediscover in this A3 event. It must be said however that Avalon Lucky failed to live up to his name as he was flying at the finish after being slowly away and meeting quite a deal of trouble in running. He is certainly one for the notebook.
Race 4 - The 5/2 chance Clerihan Scolari was back to his best in this A2 and he just got the better of a great battle with the 6/4 favourite Glenbervie Lord. They had it between them from traprise and Clerihan Scolari owned and trained by Maurice Organ in Carrick-on-Suir finished just the stronger to gain the verdict by half a length in 28.96.
Race 5 - Trainer Tom Oâ€™Neill who is having a fine run of success at the Suirside track sent out the 7/4 jolly Advantage Johnjo for the 550 A2 and ths son of Hondo Black and Miss Wonderful made all the running to gain his tenth victory in a smart 30.29.
Race 6 - This Irish Examiner A1 contest produced another superb performance over the standard trip. Chin Gach Gook was an odds-on favourite but there was money also for Matt Oâ€™Donnellâ€™s Mountaylor Ace and they had it between them. The favourite set out to make all but Mountaylor Ace always had her in his sights and he challenged at the final bend before going clear to gain a two length win in a sparkling 28.69. Aughacasla Adamran a big race to finish third three and a half lengths in arrears of the runner-up. The winner a son of Skywalker Ace and Mardocs Colleen has now won three of his five starts and should prove a strong Produce Stakes contender.
Races 7 & 8 - The Tom Kearney â€œFamily Butcherâ€ A4 Stake Semi-Finals.
Pull The Plug was an odds-on 4/6 chance for the first heat and duly obliged with a comprehensive win. Although tardy from traps, the son of Big Daddy Cool and Borraderra Babe had the pace to make the bend in front and he led Moonroe Exchange and Lachteens Tips down the back straight. This order was maintained to the line and the distances were six and a half lengths and two lengths. Trained by Ollie Cooney for Cahir owner Neil Carey the winner clocked 28.91.
Cluttahina Clare was also a 4/6 chance in the second heat but lost her chance at the opening bend where badly baulked. This left Southern Hero and Breakaway Harry clear of the jolly and Breakaway Harry got up on the line to take the spoils by the narrowest of margins from Southern Hero with Cluttahina Clare two lengths back in third place. The winner a son of Skywalker Ace and The Other Lucky owned and trained by Liam Harding clocked 29.36.
Clonmel Track - Thursday, February 24
The major talking point of the session was the first success at the 36th attempt of local enthusiast Anne Barryâ€™s Lyons Skater which came in as a reserve in the Irish Examiner A4/A5 575 event and made all the running to at last break her maiden in impressive style. The Jan â€˜08 daughter of Big Daddy Cool and Lyons Joy has had sixteen placed runs in her career and if ever a victory was overdue and well merited this was it. Lyons Skater pinged the lids and she had the spoils in the bag from a long way out as she stormed to a five length win over Sonalee with Tokyo Red half a length back in third place. Her winning time was 31.90.
Cappoquin owner John Geoghegan and Castletownroche Tom Oâ€™Neill recorded a smashing double with the litter sisters Lefanta Jess and Lefanta Jay in the opening novice events.
Race 1 - Lefanta Jess was an even money favourite and the daughter of Ballymac Maeve and Lefanta April got off to a tardy start as Practical Man made the running. The favourite challenged approaching the penultimate bend and soon took command to emerge a one and a half length winner over Practical Man with Shams Moll the same distance back in third place. The winner clocked 29.79.
Race 2 - The Owen McKenna trained Amorous Grace was all the rage and ended a red hot 2/5 chance allowing Lefanta Jay to start at 3/1. The latter simply flew from trap three and the jolly could never get in a blow as the Geoghegan/Oâ€™Neill double was completed in very impressive style.
Race 3 - The 6/4 market leader Kilbreedy Champ led approaching the opening bend where Rival Star looked a big danger. However when Rival Star headed for the hare rail as they turned for home the event was presented to the favourite which went on to score by a length and a half from his challenger in 16.56. The winning son of Cloonturk Champ and Positive Honey is owned and trained in Cashel by Frank Hickey.
Race 4 - This A7 went to another favourite and yet another progeny of Ballymac Maeve, Carranline Champ which made all the running in the white jacket to defeat market rival Patch Get Home by four lengths with Chamberlain Bua running on to take third four and a half lengths in arrears of the runner-up.
Race 5 - Dropped in grade and coming in as a reserve the easy to back 3/1 chance Busy Girl returned to winning form and gave a career best display when making all the running to score in 29.40. Owned and trained locally by Mary Egan the daughter of Top Honcho and Toberadora Rose had four lengths in hand of Kilnamack List with Montos Shaunagh half a length back in third place.
Race 6 - This yielded another local success as William Flahertyâ€™s consistent but luckless Amy Eile (Tucks Mein-Ambleside Amy), a 5/2 chance, got her head in front where it mattered at the twelfth attempt. Harsh Lass, Amy Eile and Adams Spider were the ones with the early pace and the eventual winner quickly took up the running and kept on well to defeat the staying Adams Spider and Cappadrummin Boy by a length and two lengths in 29.69.
Race 8 - The even money favourite Express Factor a son of Hondo Black and Express Wish owned and trained by Michael Dalton took up the running on the back straight and stayed on well to break his maiden at the third time of asking. Vancouver Andy ran on well to challenge on the run-in but was a length in arrears of the winner at the line with Roisins Betty a half length back in third spot.