Natural High proves a job Weld-done

DERMOT WELD doesn’t pay many visits to Tipperary, but arrived specifically at the course last night to see his Natural High contesting the T.I.R.D Chamber Of Commerce Maiden.

The Sadler’s Wells gelding was having his attentions turned to the flat, having made an impressive debut when winning a bumper at the Galway Festival.

Bookmakers offered as high as 13-8 about the four-year-old, but that found favour and he was well taken to 9-10.

He never gave supporters any cause for concern, cruising in the hands of Pat Smullen throughout.

Smullen asked him to go by front-running Waltz at the furlong pole and Natural High didn’t disappoint, sweeping away for an effortless three and a half lengths success.

Said Weld: “He’s a grand horse and could go for a flat handicap next, or a maiden hurdle.”

David Wachman’s newcomer, Icon Dream, was far too good for his opponents in the Tipperary Town Business and Community Raceday EBF Maiden.

He was pulling double over his rivals in the straight and only had to be pushed out by Wayne Lordan to score by a comfortable length and a half.

Commented Wachman: “He’s a horse we like a lot, his last couple of bits of work have been very good. It will probably be a stakes race next for him.”

Charlie Swan’s Flameoftheforest redeemed the promise of his first outing at Roscommon when taking the Glenvale Stud Auction Maiden.

Billy Lee drove him ahead well inside the furlong pole to beat morning-price gamble, Kevin Prendergast’s newcomer, White Front.

Said Swan: “You never know if they will go on that type of ground, but it was a help being by Danehill Dancer.

“He’s a big horse and I just gave him time after Roscommon. He might have one more run this season.”

It was Swan’s first ever two-year-old winner.

The featured Listed Irish Stallion Farms’ EBF Fairy Bridge Stakes was won in fine style by 10-1 shot Choose Me.

Brought widest of all up the straight by Declan McDonogh, she powered through in the closing stages to beat the flattering Pollen.

Disappointment of the contest was well-backed favourite, Latin Love. She tried to make all, but was beaten with less than two furlongs to go.

Harry Rogers saddled first and third in the Buy A Racing Post Yearling Bonus Candidate Nursery Handicap, with victory going to 12-1 shot, Irish Reel.

Truth to tell, she streaked away with this, after hitting the front over a furlong down in the hands of in-form Shane Foley.

Said Rogers: “That was a very ordinary race, because none of mine are stars.

“She (Irish Reel) may turn up again at the Curragh on Sunday.”

Rogers’ box broke down on the way, but Kevin Prendergast’s mode of transport obliged by getting his inmates to the track.

The Austin Leahy-trained Gra Geal Mo Chroi took the Tallis And Co Construction Handicap with plenty to spare.

Eased into the lead off the home turn by Emmet McNamara, the mare was soon in control to easily beat Mirabile Dictu.

“She loves soft ground and will probably go to Listowel now”, reported Leahy.

German girl, Nadine Gratz, partnered the Tom Hogan-trained Frutti Tutti to victory in the Ladies Qualified Riders’ Association Fegentri World Championship Race.

She dashed the daughter of Fruits Of Love clear over four fourlongs out and Qudraat couldn’t get to her in the last furlong.

Said Hogan: “She can ride, she did exactly what she was told.”

Oliver Brady’s Takestan, partnered by Paul Townend, led with less than a furlong to go to land the Derrinstown Stud Apprentic Series Handicap.

There were no after-the-race antics from the colourful character, however, with Brady absent from the meeting.

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