Plenty of life left in Mossy as he proves too good for rivals

IN a short few weeks Mossy Green will celebrate his 12th birthday, but showed at Thurles yesterday there is still plenty life left in Willie Mullins’ charge.

He proved far too good for his rivals in the Thurles Chase, winning in style under Ruby Walsh. He got a soft lead in the early stages of the contest and never looked like giving it back.

Mossy Green jumped for fun and had this in safe keeping when making his only error at the final fence.

Commented Mullins: “He always pays his way and there are more races to be won with him.

“He will probably go back in trip now and will mix it as well over hurdles.”

The inexperienced Kerryhead Windfarm prove a big disappointment. Taken at 9-4 in the morning and strong on the track as well, he blundered his way round and was well beaten before two out.

Michael Hourigan trains Kerryhead Windfarm and indicated his star novice, Mossbank, successful at Fairyhouse on Wednesday, is likely to turn out again relatively quickly over three miles at Cork on Sunday week.

Black Apalachi, beaten 24 lengths into fourth spot behind Afistfullofdollars at Down Royal, boosted that form when taking the first division of the Irish Stallion Farms’ EBF Beginners Chase.

John Cullen had him in front four from home and the winner found plenty to resist the persistent challenge of Oscar Brunel.

Trainer, Philip Rothwell, was realistic regarding future plans. “He proved last season he was not a top novice”, said Rothwell.

“Depending on the handicapper, I hope to run him in the better staying handicap chases.”

The second division of the same contest was won in good style by Far From Trouble, partnered by Tony McCoy for Christy Roche and J P McManus.

“He came on plenty for his first outing of the season, Tony said he would”, reported Roche.

Homer Wells landed in front three from home, but clearly needed this and Far From Trouble eased past between the last two fences.

“He could run in the Drinmore (Fairyhouse), but I might look for an easier route until the ground improves”, said Roche.

The John Kiely trained Campanella, bought in Germany and with two runs on the flat under her belt, landed the Templemore Mares Maiden Hurdle.

The daughter of Lomitas and Theatre Diva powered ahead between the last two flights and it was Campanella, under a strong Paul Carberry drive, who stayed on the better through the final hundred yards.

“She surprised me, she probably liked the track”, reported Kiely. Well supported favourite, Rory’s Sister, tried to make all, but was beaaten coming away from the second last.

Eoghan O’Grady, who trains some ten horses at Ballyclough, near Mallow, enjoyed a welcome turn when On The Net landed the Killinan Beginners Chase.

Runner-up behind Kerryhead Windfarm at Fairyhouse, On The Net landed in front at the second last for Davy Russell and slogged it out to beat heavily-backed market leader, Kadiskar.

“He will probably run again on Sunday week at either Cork or Punchestown”, said O’Grady.

Heading to the penultimate obstacle in the Martinstown Opportunity Handicap Chase it looked a match between Poc Fada and Definition.

But Poc Fada fell and Definition lost his rider, leaving Leodotcom in to beat Lord Teapot.

Niki O’Shea (23) rode his ninth winner of the season on Champion Gold in the Holycross Handicap Hurdle.

It was a polished performance by this improving pilot, as he drove the always prominent six-year-old clear early in the straight to score by 11 lengths.

Champion Gold is trained by Charles Coakley at Killarney.

Edward O’Grady’s Major Hayward was driven ahead over a furlong down by Kevin Power, despite the rider losing his whip, to hold Sir Overbury in the Bumper.

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