Derek O’Connor opted to desert Indy Five, whom he partnered at Rathcannon, in favour of the Sam Curling-trained newcomer Mister Don and consequently it was Roger Quinlan that came in for the mount aboard the Vertical Speed-sired winner.
Indy Five (2/1 – 7/2) always travelled with purpose and he moved through to challenge on the inner after four out, leading from the third last.
Whilst runner-up Big River held every chance from two out, Indy Five was always on top in the closing stages and he duly thwarted Ger Hourigan’s charge by a length with an eight-length break to odds-on favourite Mister Don in third spot.
“He’s a smart horse and I think that he’s a bumper type,” disclosed Doyle, who trains less than a mile from this course, of the Roddy O’Byrne-owned Indy Five.
Undertheboardwalk (8/1), a former three-time scorer for Tony Martin that finished third off a mark of 125 on his penultimate track foray in a Leopardstown handicap chase back in January, made a victorious point debut with his owner/trainer John Halley’s son Josh in the open lightweight.
The eight-year-old Undertheboardwalk, despite stripping quite in need of the outing, led from two out and he had sufficient reserves of stamina left to fend off favourite Lookoutnow by a short head in the closest finish of the afternoon.
Halley senior can consider himself unfortunate not to have sent out two winners for his representative Dalia Pour Moi had just taken up the running and was clearly travelling best with Pa King when falling at the final fence in the five and six-year-old geldings’ maiden.
Long-time leader Glengra was then left in the lead only to sustain quite serious interference and he was mastered inside the final 50 yards by recent Tattersalls Farm third Salsa Sensation (3/1 – 5/2), partnered by Brian Linehan from Fermoy.
The towering Salsa Sensation is trained by the absent Ted Walsh for his son-in-law Killian McCarthy, who hails from Midleton.
The last fence once again played as crucial role in the closing seven-year-old and upwards maiden as it claimed the Aidan Fitzgerald-trained newcomer Tango Louvo, who had made all the running up to that point and was set for a comfortable success for he was increasing his four-length advantage when cruelly coming to grief.
I Wonder Why (5/1) was then left at the head of affairs and Vinny Devereux’s charge defeated Colgrave Sound by four lengths in the hands of 24-year-old Shane O’Rourke.
The grey Carrigeen Acebo (5/1), who was fitted with a hood, led or disputed virtually throughout with her handler’s daughter Liz in the mares’ winners of two and she drew clear on the incline to the finish to dismiss Tom’s Girl by three lengths.
Tom’s Girl’s trainer Willie Murphy and rider Derek O’Connor once again had to settle for second spot when their representative West Legend lost out by two and a half lengths to former Cheltenham festival winner Dun Doire’s half-sister Cul Dealga (6/1) in the five and six-year-old mares’ maiden.
Cul Dealga, owned, trained and bred by Cathy O’Leary from Kildalkey in Co Meath, was providing her rider Niall Terry from Castleknock with a second points success and the victorious daughter of Kalanisi is now on the market.