John James may head for Aintree after easy success

HOMER SCOTT nominated a possible tilt at the John Hughes Chase, over the Grand National fences, at Liverpool next Friday for John James, after the gelding had taken the Clonmel Chase at the Tipperary track yesterday.

Scott is a part-time trainer these days, he has just four horses in his care, and his main job is managing Lisheen Stud in Kildare.

John James has turned inside out in his last two runs, previously proving very impressive at Tramore.

“I haven’t a clue why that is”, reported Scott. “We got him examined a few times during the winter and could find nothing wrong, maybe it is the better ground.”

The nine-year-old gets on really well with regular pilot, Ken Whelan, and made every yard of the running, scampering clear from the last to beat Quadco by five lengths.

Deyrnia, fresh from a promising debut at the Curragh, behind highly-rated Bobs Pride, duly took the Irish Stallion Farms’ EBF Fillies Maiden.

She swished her tail then and the layers, clearly mindful of that, seemed very anxious to lay her.

The daughter of Intikhab swished again here, but it made no difference and she made practically all, staying on strongly through the final furlong for Michael Kinane to beat Sweet Firebird.

“She’s still very green”, said Jimmy O’Neill representing trainer, John Oxx. “But she’s genuine and will improve with a couple of runs. She will stay a mile and a half and a handicap will probably be next.”

The realistic Davy Russell muttered the immortal words, “I was lucky”, after guiding Endless Magic to victory in the Comeragh Beginners Chase.

Certainly it was no exaggeration, because Dunbrody Millar looked to have the contest in safe keeping rising to the last. But he crashed out here and so did Seethensee, who was challenging for second alongside the eventual winner.

Russell then did really well to avoid Dunbrody Millar, swerving away from him and then powering his charge clear to beat Move Over.

“It is nice to get a bit of luck, the tide has been out for a while”, said winning trainer, Edward O’Grady.

Endless Magic is owned by O’Grady’s son, Jonathan, who is currently completing his MBA at Harvard Business School.

Tom Ryan, who partnered Dunbrody Millar, was removed to Cashel Hospital with lacerations to his mouth.

Charlie Swan’s Bravery lived up to his name when making all the running to win the Slievenamon Maiden Hurdle.

At the weights he had the clear beating of heavily supported Laureldean and had no trouble shaking him off from the second last.

Bravery is one of two horses Swan has for Michael O’Leary’s Gigginstown House Stud and this was the first winner he has trained for the Ryanair supremo.

“He might go for a winners’ of one, as long as the ground isn’t firm”, said Swan. “He will be a lovely horse next season and is a real chaser in the making.”

Favourite Thecaulofesker foiled a decent gamble on Ger Lyons’ Flashy Beau in the Mountain Handicap.

Flashy Beau was backed from 8-1 to 7-2 and though battling on well in the straight could never quite get to the grips with Frank Ennis’ charge, who made all for Rory Cleary.

“I’m not too sure what to do now, but I may put him in the big four-year-old hurdle at Punchestown’, said Ennis.

Dusty Sheehy’s Aleatory was the fifth horse of the day to make all when taking the Bumper.

Given a strong drive by Niall Madden, he boxed on well when the chips were down to hold Edward O’Grady's first-timer, Major Hayward.

“He’s a big baby”, commented Sheehy.

“He will have a couple of days off, be schooled over hurdles and then let out on grass.”

Curragh handler Ken Condon saddled his second winner of the season, his first was Fuerta Ventura at Thurles, when Brandon Mountain took the Templemore Handicap.

Michael Hussey sent the Woodborough gelding to the front early in the straight and market leader, Georgina, was never able to get on terms.

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