Rhythm has favourite backers singing the blues

CHAMPION jockey Paul Carberry took the honours at yesterday’s bank holiday meeting at Naas, registering a double on Alpha Rhythm and Harry The Ear in the two hurdle events on the card.

Winner of a bumper on the track last summer, Alpha Rhythm looked in trouble turning for home in the Thoroughbred County Maiden Hurdle but closed gradually before hitting the front on the run-in to beat odds-on favourite Native Churchtown by a length and a half.

Alpha Rhythm was ending a frustrating run over hurdles and his trainer Noel Meade expressed the opinion that they have found the key to the five year old - producing him late.

Carberry completed his double when giving joint top weight Harry The Ear a confident ride to land the Event And Venue Hire At Naas Racecourse Handicap Hurdle. The Michael Halford trained gelding edged past Home Office before the final flight before and held the late challenge of Receff by a length.

Trainer Halford explained: "He's a fun horse for the syndicate and we'll continue mixing it with him, over hurdles and on the flat but we'll have to be careful where we go because he is claustrophobic and doesn't like stalls."

Lord Admiral, a slow starter on his debut at Leopardstown, landed a gamble (8/1 - 9/2) when winning the Orpen Two-Year-Old Maiden in the colours of the legendary Vincent O'Brien.

This son of El Prado was produced with a well-timed challenge by leading apprentice Davey Condon to beat Memorandum.

Winning trainer Charles O'Brien said: "He's a nice horse and was probably entitled to win on his Leopardstown form. He is still weak and will improve but he might struggle when the ground gets soft so he'll only have one or two runs before being put away."

Another gamble was partly landed when The Gollymocky (6/1-7/2), trained by Patrick Prendergast, dead-heated with the John Oxx trained Secret Wish, a fourteenth winner of the season for apprentice Cathy Gannon, in the New Development At Naas Racecourse Maiden.

Trainer Eddie Lynam brought his seasonal tally to 13 when Luggala, ridden by Declan McDonogh, captured the Irish Stallion Farms Filles Maiden beating Diplomatic Gamble by half a length. And Lynam thanked champion jockey Michael Kinane, who rode the filly last time and recommended that she should be produced with as late a challenge as possible.

Apprentice Jamie Moriarty recorded his eight success when bringing the Tim Doyle-trained Jumbo Romance with a strong late challenge to beat Moyella in the Derrinstown Apprentice Handicap.

Willie Mullins landed the bumper with the French-bred newcomer Lasquini Du Moulin, carrying the colours of the Dublin-based Sunnybank syndicate. This grey is likely to go to Tralee or Listowel for a winner's bumper before being launched over hurdles.

Meanwhile Budelli, an unlucky loser in the William Hill Great St Wilfrid Handicap last year, will be back in a bid to go one better in the £50,000 sprint on August 16.

He booked his place with a comfortable success in the Armstrong Memorial Rated Stakes over course and distance at Ripon yesterday.

The Mick Channon-trained gelding was making a quick reappearance after finishing 11th in the Stewards' Cup at Goodwood on Saturday, and he was given a lovely, confident ride by Dean Corby. He had him travelling sweetly and once he asked him to quicken the response was immediate, with Budelli sweeping into the lead inside the final furlong and striding away to beat Artie by two and a half lengths.

Channon was taking his score for the season to 80, and his representative Lesley White said: "Budelli stumbled at the start in the Great St Wilfrid last year and he was only beaten a short head in the end.

"I don't see any reason why he should not have another go. He is a tough horse who takes his racing and travelling well and Dean (Corby) gets on very well with him."

Apprentice Suzanne France showed that a horrific fall, in which she was very lucky to escape serious injury, at Thirsk on Friday had not dented her confidence when bringing Petite Mac with a perfectly-timed run to win the Kathryn Apanowicz Radio Show Selling Handicap. This was her fifth success, the other four having been gained on Efidium, and her boss Neville Bycroft, who retained Petite Mac without a bid, said: "Suzanne said she let him down too soon last time and she was very cool on him today."

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