Beautifully handled by Davy Condon, the Barathea gelding cruised past Duff under two furlongs down and then lengthened away to beat favourite, She’s Our Mark, unextended by four and a half lengths.
Johnny Harrington did the honours for his wife and said: “This is down to Maxine Cowdrey who bought him for 18,000 Guineas at Newmarket.
“No one wanted the horse, he was supposed to be wrong. He was bought with hurdling in mind and I’d imagine that remains the plan.”
John Oxx’s Hasanka was a major morning-price gamble in the Boss Croker Centenary Give Thanks Stakes, tumbling down from 4-1.
She was always much shorter on track and the wagers appeared in reasonably safe keeping when the daughter of Kalanisi hit the front for Michael Kinane with two furlongs to run.
But Downtown was soon out after her and David Wachman’s charge got up on the line under a powerful Seamus Heffernan drive.
Wachman was represented by one of his assistants, Pierce Power, who reported: “She is from a very good family and winning a Group 3 was important. We will try and find something similar.”
Once the photo finish print was put on public display, it didn’t half generate some comment with scores and scores of punters arriving to view the picture.
Many were of the opinion the judge had got it wrong. It was confusing and took some sorting out, but there was little doubt he called it right.
Liam Burke, fresh from a terrific week at Galway, continued his good run run when Major Finnegan, 5-2 to 2-1, landed the Killetra Maiden Hurdle with plenty in hand.
In front well before the home turn, Davy Russell only had to push out the Lord Americo gelding to beat Sabbiosa a snug two lengths.
“I was afraid of the ground”, admitted Burke. “He’s a fair horse, who wants good ground. He’s only in a month, but worked great last week and a novice hurdle is likely to be next.”
It was Russell’s 39th of the season and he is currently well clear in the jockeys’ championship. Made In Taipan held a clear lead when running out heading to the sixth last.
The rapidly improving Bold Bibi completed a hat-trick of successes when taking the Irish Stallion Farms’ EBF Fillies Handicap. Johnny Murtagh literally stole the race when kicking hard early in the straight and the outcome wasn’t in doubt through the final furlong.
Trainer, Michael Halford, said: “She’s not very big, but is all heart. Another handicap will be next and we will try her in a higher grade in time.”
Well-known owner, Seamus Ross, made the journey to Cork by helicopter and it proved well worthwhile, with his Genuine Pearl landing the Bumper.
“Badly needed, I haven’t had a winner since February”, exclaimed trainer, Mickey Flynn. Denis Cullen sent the Desert King gelding about his business well over two furlongs out and Genuine Pearl galloped on strongly to score by four and a half lengths.
“He’s bred to win a Derby and, big and all as he is, wants good ground”, said Flynn, of his well backed inmate.
Richie Kiely cried off injured from Vale Of Avocia in the Cork Handicap Hurdle and Alain Cawley substituted and duly guided the mare to victory.
Vale Of Avocia finished best of all from the final flight, proving too good for the always prominent Mantell Gail.
In-form Michael Hussey was again seen to advantage aboard Thomond O’Mara’s Lookingforanalibi in the Newmarket Handicap.
He got a smashing run up the inside to grab Thru’thechair well inside the final furlong. Hussey, however, was severely cautioned regarding his use of the whip.