Slievecorragh up for the Cup

THE Francis Flood-trained Slievecorragh got off the mark on the flat when landing the featured Kedrah House Stud Well Chosen Tipperary Perpetual Cup at Clonmel last night.

He may have started at 20-1, but there was no fluke about the victory as Billy Lee guided the Celtic Swing gelding to an emphatic five lengths win.

Lee made his move under two furlongs down and Slievecorragh lengthened away to easily beat always prominent Kerryhead Windfarm.

Flood was represented by his son, Fran, who said: “His flat runs were okay and, as long as there’s a dig in the ground, he will continue to mix it on the level and over hurdles. He’s also big enough to jump a fence.”

Tony Martin’s Equator went off the well-backed 6-4 favourite, but ran no sort of race. He was beaten four furlongs from home and was right out of contention when pulled up by Fran Berry in the straight. It subsequently transpired that he burst a blood vessel.

“Badly wanted”, exclaimed Dungourney, Co Cork trainer, Denis Ahern, after his Tiarella popped up at 14-1 in the Summer BBQ June 12th Handicap Chase.

Droim Toll held a decent advantage for much of the journey, but had nothing left once Andrew McNamara eased the winner past between the final two fences.

“She got black type here two years ago, but just hasn’t been herself ”, said Ahern. “She’s won two hurdles and a chase now and, if sound in the morning, we’ll keep going with her.”

The stewards, however, inquired into the apparent improvement in form of Tiarella, compared to her previous run at Clonmel on March 19.

Ahern stated that Paddy Flood (rider) felt that she had lost her action coming down the hill and pulled up.

Because he had not made the relevant report to any official, the stewards referred the matter to the Referrals Committee.

Liam Cusack’s Majestic Oak gave a fine exhibition of jumping to make a winning start over fences in the Clonmel Thanks MH Designs Beginners Chase.

He made just about all of the running, but had his task considerably eased when the challenging Another Ambition crashed out at the last.

“He’s a half-brother to Wahiba Sands and I was very worried about the ground”, said Cusack.

“That’s it for him now, I don’t know at what level he can compete, but he is a very nice horse.”

Bookmakers began their day with a cracking result when 20-1 shot Suprise Vendor beat 33-1 shot Spinning Wings in the Irish Stallion Farms’ EBF Maiden.

Partnered by Brazilian-born Franco Da Silva - this was his fifth success in Ireland - Suprise Vendor quickened through the final furlong to score by three parts of a length.

Trainer, Leslie Young, reported: “He has improved from two to three, the plan was to go for a handicap at Gowran Park next Thursday, but he is probably ruled out of that now.”

Uneasy favourite Carefree Smile, rated 24lbs better than the winner, touched the front a furlong down, but was soon beaten.

Christy Roche’s Back Me Up came from the clouds to take the Join Clonmel Racecourse Supporters’ Club Mares Handicap Hurdle.

She was brought with a sustained effort up the near rail by Alan Crowe to nail Credit Box close home.

Frank Berry, representing owner, J P McManus, said: “She’s been disappointing, but the bit of good ground was a help.”

Punters, who had the worst of the battle through the evening, waded into Bangonform in the concluding Finger Food And Music After Racing Maiden Hurdle, 9-4 to 11-8.

Soon in front, Barry Cash’s mount looked the most likely winner for most of the journey, but was eventually swamped by the late surge of the Niall Madden-ridden 14-1 shot, Elyaadi.

Commented trainer, John Queally: “We bought her from Darley (stud) and that was her first run over hurdles. She disappointed us a little on the flat, but I still think might win one.”

Michael Grassick had his first winner of the campaign with American Princess in the New Club Stand Opening This Evening Handicap.

Partnered by Danny Mullins, the daughter of Desert Prince made virtually all the running, enterprisingly being kicked clear early in the straight to beat Vicky Lane.

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