Last season’s champion conditional jockey Darragh O’Keeffe has enjoyed a good start to this season, and he doubled up on last night’s card at Tramore, one of which was for trainer Liam Burke, who also enjoyed a double.
O’Keeffe teamed up with Tom Gibney’s Elegant Lass to take the Noel Ryan Tree Surgeon Mares’ Handicap Hurdle. She made most of the running, was clear a long way out but was all out to deny the fast-finishing Aunty Audrey by a short head.
After Trees Valley and Donagh Meyler had given Burke the first leg of his double by winning the Newtown Head Mares’ Maiden Hurdle, O’Keeffe completed his and Burke’s brace by taking the Copper Coast Geo Park Handicap Hurdle with Yaiza.
Willie Mullins won with both of his runners on the card. The EY Chase which opened the card was one of the more interesting contests but only four of the eight declared runners took their place in the line-up and that resulted in Easy Game going off the 2-9 favourite. It was not the walk in the park which the odds implied, but he got the job done to give Mullins and Paul Townend the first race winner for the second day in a row.
Patrick Mullins completed the double for his father when guiding Ruaille Buaille to a wide-margin victory in the Tramore Racecourse Directors Bumper.
Cappoquin trainer Niall Hennessy notched the first track success of his training career when Mary Fields took the FormaHoof Handicap Chase. Mikey Hamill produced the 16-1 chance with a well-timed run to deny Cluan Dara and Cantkidakidder in a tight finish.
Banjo got off the mark at the twentieth time of asking when racing to an easy victory in the Strand Street Tramore Maiden Hurdle. Continuing the fine run of Denis Cullen and providing a second winner of the meeting for Conor McNamara, he stretched clear late to gain his long overdue success.