Sego Success (2/1), a creditable fourth to Oscar Fortune on his initial outing at Boulta in November, made all the running giving an exhibition of fencing in the process. Whilst runner-up Dark Outsider edged closer from the second last, the victorious son of Benefical was always possessing too many aces for Denis Ahern’s charge with three and a half lengths ultimately separating the pair.
“This horse wasn’t quite right after Boulta,” confessed Maguire of the Chalkmead Ltd-owned Sego Success. “If anything, he’s best when coming from off the pace and we will now have a think about the Pegus bumper at Cork over Easter.”
Sego Success’ rider Declan Queally went on to complete a double aboard Moss Grove (4/6) in the confined hunt maiden. The Eamonn Fehily-trained Moss Grove, who was equipped with a tongue-tie, vindicated the promise of his three most recent placed starts at Aghabullogue, Tallow and Askeaton by making all the running. Whilst Chase The Clouds closed with every stride inside the final 100 yards, the Revoque-sired Moss Grove held on to score by a head.
The towering Moss Grove incidentally is owned by the four-member Dun Drinan Syndicate which comprises Henry Wall from Crookstown, Macroom’s Michael Purcell, Eddie Kenneally from Ballincollig and Paul Montgomery of Reardons niteclub in Cork city.
Pacesetting tactics similarly proved spot on when Footy Facts (6/4), trained by Robert Tyner who was also on the mark with Lady Cloudings at Killaloe, made most of the running in the open.
The 13-year-old Footy Facts re-assumed command for Kevin Power on the climb from the penultimate obstacle to contain Irene Walsh’s mount Pocket Reader by four lengths. Winning owner Maurice Kelleher from Riverstick intimated that Footy Facts, a former nine-time track winner that was registering his fifth points success, will continue hunt racing duties for the immediate future.
Racegoers were treated to a gripping finale in the winners of one with the five-year-old Winter Magic (4/1) bravely coming a second time under Gerry Mangan to edge out Lenamore Boy by a short head with a two-length gap back to the flattering Pocketfullapennies in third spot. Handler Jimmy Mangan divulged that the recent Tallow confined hunt maiden victor Winter Magic, a July foal that’s shared by breeder Tina Kouwenberg with Nicola Kent, could now take in a hunter chase.
The absent Terence O’Brien, fresh from a double at Clonmel three days earlier, continued his purple patch by sending out last month’s Killeagh runner-up She’s Got Grit (6/4) to register a bloodless success with Richie Harding in the first division of the six-year-old and upwards mares’ maiden.
She’s Got Grit, representing Anne Mellerick, eased into the lead with three fences remaining and she stylishly pulled clear on the ascent from two out to beat long-time leader Killones Lady Vic by 16 lengths. O’Brien’s representative Nigel Healy suggested that a tilt at a bumper is now probable for She’s Got Grit.
Maizeys Honour (3/1) justified the trek from handler George Webb’s Birr stable by coming home at her leisure under Davy Byrne in the second instalment of this same contest. Maizeys Honour, who was virtually assured of victory when falling at the final fence on her previous outing at Belhabour, stormed into the lead on the inner after two out and she then effortlessly maintained the momentum to account for the eyecatching Western Goose by three lengths.
Paul O’Neill forfeited his 5lbs claiming allowance by steering Norman Lee’s Rebel Cry (4/1) to victory in the six-year-old and upwards geldings’ maiden, the race that attracted the biggest field of the day in 16 starters.
Rebel Cry, still holding every chance when falling at the final fence in the Avaune maiden won by subsequent British bumper scorer Bob Ford in December, jumped into the lead at the second last and he kept pulling out more on the flat to contain the fast-finishing Reddy Boy by a length in the colours of owner Sarah Hogan from Castletroy.