Cuan Na Grai finds conditions to his liking

CUAN Na Grai, taken out twice of late because of quick ground by Paul Nolan, found conditions to his liking in the Festival 18th and 19th July Hurdle at Tipperary last night.

The surface here, however, rode better than might have been anticipated and that certainly suited the former Galway Hurdle hero.

Produced with impeccable timing by Alain Cawley, the winner eased past the flattering Clear Riposte going to two out to score by three and a half lengths.

Reported Nolan: “Hopefully, he will go to Galway for a two miles and one novice chase, as long as the ground is safe.”

Robert Tyner’s Our Musician, fresh from a promising effort at the Curragh previously, outclassed the opposition in the Visit Tipperary Bumper.

He coasted through the contest for Colin Motherway, until eased ahead under two furlongs down.

Said Tyner: “I have been waiting on the ground for him. He will go out on grass now and come back over hurdles.”

The layers got a screamer when 33-1 shot Rio Alto ran away with the first division of the Ballyhooly Racing Club Maiden Hurdle.

It was impossible to make a case for her, on the basis of two poor runs, but she took this with any amount in hand.

Paddy Flood let out an inch of rein early in the straight and Rio Alto bounded clear.

Trainer, James Motherway, said: “That’s a surprise, my horses just haven’t been firing. We might try her again in about two weeks in a novice hurdle.”

The second division of the same race produced an equally easy winner in Charlie Swan’s Tribes And Banner.

“He (David Casey) has some pair of hands, that horse can be so free”, said a delighted Swan.

Casey brought Tribes And Banner with a smooth challenge early in the straight to beat Nora Marea easily.

“He loves fast ground and will race through the summer”, confirmed Swan.

Christy Roche’s patience with What’s New reaped a dividend when the 14-1 shot took the Martinstown Opportunity Handicap Hurdle.

Given a particularly strong drive by Denis Hogan, the winner held on for dear life, as Wedontknow threatened danger over the final two flights.

“He’s had every type of problem, but is sound now”, said Roche.

“He will go for another handicap and as soon as possible.”

Waittillitellyou, successful in the contest a year ago, repeated the dose with a game success in the Roscrea Active Retirement Handicap Hurdle.

Kevin Coleman had him in front early on the final circuit, but the game appeared to be up when Printing Copper edged past heading to the second last.

Waittilltellyou is as tough as nails, though, and rallied back to take control again before the final flight.

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