O'Brien's Chief flops at Killarney

One-time Derby hope Indian Chief could only finish last of three in the Killarney Grand Race at the County Kerry track.

O'Brien's Chief flops at Killarney

One-time Derby hope Indian Chief could only finish last of three in the Killarney Grand Race at the County Kerry track.

The Aidan O’Brien-trained colt failed to get his career back on track as he was well held behind the Michael Halford-trained Opera Gloves (7-2).

St Jean made the running with the 4-11 shot held up in last place under Joseph O’Brien.

When Shane Foley took it up on the Sheikh Mohammed-owned filly, there was no response from Indian Chief as Opera Gloves went on to win in cosy fashion by a length and a half.

Indian Chief’s Classic hopes had been dashed when he was only third in the Dante Stakes at York and he was on a retrieval mission after failing at Royal Ascot, but he still has several Group entries.

The winner is now due for a step up in class.

“She has a preference for going left-handed and we will probably take her to Listowel next for a Listed race,” said Halford.

Halford topped and tailed the card as had also taken the opener with Paddy The Celeb, who made a winning debut over jumps in the Killarney Plaza Hotel Maiden Hurdle.

The seven-year-old was sent off the 11-8 favourite on the strength of boasting decent form on the Flat and duly won by a length under Andrew McNamara.

Halford said: “He was entitled to win a race like this and we will probably look for a novice for him now.”

The O’Brien team did get on the scoresheet with Mekong River (4-5 favourite).

The two-year-old colt duly dispensed of his two rivals to take his 100% record to two in the Irish Stallion Farms EBF Nursery.

“He is a hardy horse and he stays well. He learned a lot from Gowran,” said the trainer.

“Joseph made the running as he felt he would get the trip well and I’d say he learned plenty again today.”

Katie Walsh drove He’s Our Man (9-2) to victory for her husband Ross O’Sullivan in the ML Lynch Civil Engineering (Q.R.) Race.

“He is my stable star and Katie was very good on him. She was very strong in the finish,” said the trainer.

“There is a meeting at Galway in a few weeks and there is a hurdle and chase there that would suit him. If he doesn’t go there he could go to Listowel.”

Highly-regarded apprentice Connor King was successful on Ravello Again (11-8 favourite) in the Killarney Oils Handicap while the Tracey Collins-trained Roe Deer (10-1) was an easy winner of the Killarney Sports & Leisure Centre Handicap.

On a mixed card, Phillip Enright grasped a chance ride with both hands as he steered The Boat People to victory in the KWD Handicap Hurdle.

Enright only got the mount on Henry de Bromhead’s runner in the feature after Andrew Lynch was stood down after taking a tumble from Charnley in the opening race.

He kept it simple by making all on The Boat People (7-1) to score by a length and a quarter from Mister Hotelier.

“Andrew got the fall on his shoulder, he thinks it’s OK but he has been stood down for the day,” said de Bromhead.

“It is unfortunate for him but Phillip gave this fellow a super ride.

“They (owners) love going to Aintree so we will probably aim him at one of the lesser two-mile handicaps there.”

Baidin Fheilimi (11-2) came out on top in a three-way finish to the Martinstown Opportunity Handicap Hurdle to supplement her victory at Cork last Sunday.

Patrick Cronin’s seven-year-old, ridden by Pierce Gallagher, had a rival on either side in the fierce run to the line but got the verdict by half a length from Shantalla.

Cronin, who also owns and bred the mare, said: “It is unbelievable to win two races in a week, and if she is ok after this the obvious race to go for is the mares handicap hurdle at Listowel.

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