‘Corky’ ends season on a high

‘Corky’ Carroll certainly had an afternoon to savour at yesterday’s well-attended second session of the two-day Kinsale point-to-point at Farrangalway for he partnered three winners.

The middle leg of Carroll’s hat-trick came aboard Carl Dore’s well-related newcomer Shake It Up (6/1) in the second division of the four-year-old maiden. Shake It Up overcame a third-last fence blunder by easing into contention on the inner before two out and he stylishly made his way to the fore inside the final 100 yards out to oblige by a length from the filly Thisgirlisonfire, who admittedly didn’t aid her cause by drifting out to the right in the closing stages.

“This horse was a bit late coming to hand, but he liked the good ground here today and he can only improve,” said handler Dore of his wife Edel’s Shake It up, an own-brother to Jim Dreaper’s recent Punchestown festival winner Goonyella.

The 33-year-old amateur also took the first division of this same contest aboard Denis Leahy’s Silver Dime (8/1). Having pulled up on his debut at Dromahane on April 20th, Silver Dime made his way into contention from three out and he mastered Lucky Cody as the line approached to oblige by a head in what was the closest finish of the afternoon.

Carroll brought up victory number three aboard former acclaimed amateur rider Niall Kelleher’s Auldthunder (8/1) in the first division of the six-year-old geldings’ maiden. Owned by Noel Casey from Six-Mile-Bridge, Auldthunder assumed command after the final fence and the grandson of the former Galway Plate winner Hamers Flame duly returned with two and a half lengths to spare over Lowanbehold.

On an afternoon that witnessed all eleven favourites getting beaten, this season’s champion female rider Annie Bowles brought her tally for the campaign to 13 by landing the ladies open aboard Klassy (5/2). Runner-up behind Nedzer’s Return at Clonakilty a week earlier, the Sam Curling-trained Klassy took over at the final fence to beat the previous evening’s winner Isourbell by a comprehensive five lengths.

Paul Power partnered two winners, both handled by his long-standing ally Vincent Halley with the pair initially striking with Charlie Swift (6/1) in the second division of the winners of one. Charlie Swift led or disputed practically throughout and he stayed on stoutly from the final fence to thwart Maggie’s Boy by a half-length. Charlie Swift, a Tallanstown maiden victor in April, is now bound for another track campaign.

The sweet-jumping Militant Monk (8/1), who was fitted with cheekpieces, completed the Halley/Power double in the second division of the six-year-old geldings’ maiden. Militant Monk, in common with Charlie Swift owned by Halley’s father Vincent, stormed clear from the final fence to oblige in the style of a horse that could now make a play on the racetrack.

The easiest winner of the entire weekend was undoubtedly Denis Murphy’s Alderbrook Lad (7/1) who returned from a four-month lay-off to come home as he pleased with talented five lb claimer Paul Gahan in the second division of the closing seven-year-old and upwards geldings’ maiden. Alderbrook Lad, owned and bred by Alo Malone, went clear from after the third last to slam Sparkling Lord by a distance.

Trevor O’Reilly from Kilmacthomas will forever treasure fond memories of the meeting for he was credited with his initial success as a handler when his lightly-raced nine-year-old Tobermore Mossie (10/1) just came out on top with James Hannon in a driving four-way finish to the first split of this same contest. O’Reilly later paid tribute to Bobby O’Byrne of The Lodge Stud for the use of his training facilities.

Ciaran Fennssy rarely leaves Kinsale empty-handed and the former novice riders’ champion took the second division of the six-year-old and upwards mares’ maiden with Norman Lee’s Supreme Vic (6/1), who led from the final fence to deny Everybodys Dream by two lengths in a race that saw two obstacles bypassed as paramedics attended to Roger Quinlan who sustained a fourth-fence fall from Millstream Honey on the first circuit.

Mikey O’Connor, fresh from his two-timer here the previous evening, returned to the coveted number one slot aboard former Cork All-Ireland winning footballer Paul O’Flynn’s Hey June (7/2) in the first part of this same contest. Hey June, a close relation to former Champion Hurdle winner Celtic Shot, eased to the front after the third last to easily contain Blue Bell Walk and by doing so, she was atoning for a disappointing comeback effort at Ballybunion eight days earlier.

Moateland caused a 10/1 upset by landing the first division of the winners of one with 19-year-old Tullow amateur Niall Redmond, whose father John owns and trains the victorious son of Close Conflict. Moateland took over after the second last and the recent Lisronagh maiden scorer had sufficient reserves of stamina left to fend off the late effort of Evanna McCutcheon’s mount Out Of The Way by three parts of length.

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