Tipperary report: The Model Kingdom makes perfect start to life over obstacles

The 1-6 favourite only had to be shaken up to quicken clear of Ginnets Girl
Tipperary report: The Model Kingdom makes perfect start to life over obstacles

CASHING IN: Good As Hell, right, goes on to win the Tipperary Handicap Chase after Good Bye Milan and Gavin Brouder parted ways at the final fence. Both horse and jockey were fine afterwards. Picture: Healy Racing

The Noel Meade-trained The Model Kingdom, unbeaten in three bumpers, made a seamless transition to hurdling with a smooth success in the Follow Tipperary Races On Facebook Mares’ Maiden Hurdle, the first race on Monday’s card at The Junction.

Sent off the 1-6 favourite, she settled in second place, a long way off leader C’est Rien, but eased upsides on the turn for home. Steadied at the last, she only had to be shaken up to quicken clear of Ginnets Girl, who got up in the final strides to deny C’est Rien second place.

“I did plenty of jumping with her at home but, funny, she was quicker here than she was at home,” said winning rider Bryan Cooper. 

“At least something went on and gave me a lead as I didn’t want to make the running on her on her first start (over hurdles). She quickened up, and had a nice look at the last, but she didn’t come out of third gear. It was a grand start.” 

After a morning on the drift, the price of Hercule De Seuil contracted dramatically on the show and Willie Mullins’ runner duly obliged in the Join The Tipperary Supporters’ Club Maiden Hurdle. Well beaten on his first start for current connections, he was given time since that run, and it showed as he justified odds-on favouritism without giving his supporters a moment’s worry. He was a little untidy at some of the obstacles, but it mattered not a jot as he was always in front and ultimately in a different league to his rivals.

Good World was well backed to take the Follow Tipperary Races On Twitter Handicap Hurdle, and he got the job done in convincing style. Ridden by Kieran Buckley for Eoin Griffin, the seven-year-old, who was wearing cheekpieces for the first time, moved well throughout and readily came clear in the closing stages to record his first win since August of last year.

Austin Leahy and Shane O’Callaghan teamed up to take the Tipperary Races Handicap Hurdle with 22-1 chance Problem Solver. Quite a lightly-raced six-year-old who had shown glimmers of promise, he raced prominently throughout and met the final hurdle right, which was crucial. The well-backed A Dublin Job had tried to steal it by kicking on from the turn for home, but O’Callaghan had him in his sights racing to the last and with the momentum from a fast jump at the final obstacle, he ran down the leader with a little bit to spare.

So Scottish was the subject of heavy support prior to the Schooling At Tipperary Rated Novice Chase and the 5-4 favourite made a most encouraging start to his chasing career. Ridden by Donagh Meyler for Emmet Mullins, he tracked the leader most of the way but was a little short of room on the turn for home. Switched to challenge early in the straight, he jumped the last couple well and eased away under little pressure to follow up his last-time-out win over hurdles at Kilbeggan.

The Tipperary Handicap Chase proved to be full of incident, with two of the leading fancies, including the leader, Good Bye Milan, departing. That left Good As Hell in front and Philip Fenton’s horse stayed on strongly to the line to comfortably hold Union Park.

Having shown good form in his early outings in bumpers, Kiki Badger was not winning out of turn when running away with the Season Finale Ladies’ Bumper. Ridden by Aine O’Connor for trainer Anthony McCann, the 8-13 favourite raced clear in the straight to put 21 lengths between himself and his nearest pursuer, Ringsend John. He should have a productive season when sent over obstacles.

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