Sir Frederick far too good for rivals

SIR FREDERICK took his total of successes to five, all travelling right-handed, when proving far too good for the opposition in the Powerstown Chase at Clonmel last evening.

A heavily-backed market-leader, he justified the confidence in style, beating the promising Arc En Ciel with plenty in hand.

Davy Russell pushed him past Wolf Creek heading to two out and Sir Frederick quickly powered clear.

Winning trainer, Liam Burke, now has the Galway Plate in mind for the Insan gelding. “I will consider it, but not if the ground was hard”, said Burke.

“Davy has always been adamant this is his ground. The horse is in good order right now and will probably run again in May. He will be left off in June and then brought back for Galway.”

The layers began their evening with a delightful result when 16-1 shot Add Wings beat favourite Belord in the Ard Maiden Hurdle.

The mare only got into the race as first reserve and answered every call, under a powerful David Casey drive.

Belord tried to make all and they were tactics which looked set to succeed for most of the journey. But Add Wings finished with a real flourish to get up close home and score by half a length. Trainer Liam Roche indicated a novice hurdle would be next.

The Noel Meade-trained Running Wild, who was cutting out in testing conditions, often rather dramatically, looked a different proposition when taking the first division of the Irish Stallion Farms’ EBF Maiden Hurdle.

Normally held up for a late challenge, she made all on this occasion, after getting a dashing drive from Denis O’Regan.

Councillor Jack closed her down all the way to the line, but Running Wild, awkward at the last, held on to score by a short head.

Gilian O’Brien represented Meade and reported: “She has a handicap mark, but I’m not sure what will be next.”

Running Wild did jink to her left on the run in and a stewards’ inquiry was quickly called. The interference, however, was minimal and it was no surprise when the result was allowed to stand.

O’Regan completed a 103-1 double when Popular Demand, a horse balloted out no less than ten times, took the Comeragh Handicap Hurdle.

O’Regan did a smashing job, producing Popular Demand with impeccable timing to cruise ahead on the approach to the final flight.

“He’s been very free and the key is to get him to relax”, said winning trainer, James Motherway.

“The ground was a help and he will now go for something similar.”

Niall Madden swept through late and fast aboard Mullica Lad to collar Doc Charlie in the Lisronagh Handicap Chase.

Mullica Lad hadn’t been seen since Thurles back in December and his absence was explained by Fran Flood, son of trainer, Francis.

“Niall said he made a noise that day”, commented Flood. “We had an operation done on him and it seems to have worked.”

Becolark, a good order in the morning and a solid favourite on track, obliged in the second section of the Irish Stallion Farms’ EBF Maiden Hurdle.

Andrew Leigh was seen to real advantage, having to push along his charge from a fair way out. Becolark responded generously, though, and was too strong for the flattering Sulla from before the final flight. The Saturday meeting at the end of the Punchestown Festival is likely to be the next port of call for the six-year-old and he will go chasing next season, according to trainer, Jessica Harrington.

Baily Breeze, last and pulled up in his previous two races, showed a real appreciation of the change in the surface with a much improved display in the Ballypatrick Handicap Hurdle.

Conor O’Dwyer popped the 14-1 shot away in front and Mouse Morris’ charge found plenty to resist Pirates Punch.

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