Brian Hayes’ daring move pays off

Brian Hayes made a daring move up the inside to deliver a winning challenge on the Shark Hanlon-trained Abolitionist in the featured Belvedere House Gardens & Park Handicap Chase in Kilbbegan last night, second leg of a double for the rider, successful earlier on Aunt Alice for the Bowe family.

Abolitionist prevailed by a length and three-quarters from Thelobstercatcher with Perfect Promise a close third. A delighted trainer explained: “The better ground was a big help – I’ve been waiting for it a long time. I suppose we were a bit lucky to get up the inside, but that was the plan – it makes a big difference to go around the inside here.”

Hayes had initiated his double on Aunt Alice for trainer Michael Bowe, who quipped: “It’s good to be back,” after saddling his first winner since last June, the Kalanisi mare proving four lengths too strong for favourite Burton Hall.

Bowe added: “Akatara (currently in foal to Dylan Thomas) loved it around here and so does this mare. She’s an out and out stayer and a natural jumper and will be suited by a galloping track. But she’ll probably come back for a novice hurdle here in a few weeks.”

Jessica Harrington admitted: “I came here for the three miles and all the allowances,” after the Robbie Power-ridden Duckweed, the only mare in the race, proved a comfortable winner of the three-mile At The Races Novice Hurdle, beating Captain Von Trappe.

“She jumps really well and has improved with every run. She’ll go on any ground and I’m not sure if she’ll stay hurdling or go jumping fences. It’s nice to have a winner for Kieran (owner-breeder Kieran Guinness, from Moyvore) at his local track.”

Off the track for more than a year and an uneasy 5/6 favourite, the Christy Roche-trained Off The Mark made a successful hurdling debut in the Tullamore Maiden Hurdle, travelling well for Jody McGarvey before readily brushing aside the challenge of market rival Credulous.

“I was delighted with the way he jumped, because he’s had his problems,” said Frank Berry, representing owner J P McManus. “We’ll look for a ‘winners of one’ or go down the handicap route with him.”

Owned and trained in County Cork by Richard Cotter, Ronava produced an exemplary display of jumping to foil favourite Akorakor in the Westmeath Beginners Chase.

Local trainer Dot Love will consider preparing Lucky Pat for Galway following his smooth success under Davy Russell in the Like Kilbeggan Racecourse On Facebook Handicap Hurdle, explaining: “he runs well fresh and has been working better than ever. I can’t wait to go chasing with him, but he’ll go to Galway first.”

Meanwhile, Shane Foley took the riding honours with a fine treble in Dundalk, bringing Mick Halford’s once-raced colt Tailteann Games with a strong late challenge to foil Ardhoomey in the Dundalk Stadium Maiden and following-up on Koybig, another winner for in-form Ken Condon, in the Follow Us On Facebook Handicap.

Foley completed his treble when Coach Bombay, trained by Adrian Joyce, swooped late to deny top-weight Coach Bombay in the finale.

Halford described his winner as “a big, raw horse, with plenty more improvement in him,” while Foley had to work hard on Koybig, which hung right up the straight, but still had enough in reserve to hold Octavia by a half-length.

Seamus Heffernan suggested that Ballydoyle colt Fields Of Athenry is ready to step into listed company following his all-the-way defeat of odds-on favourite Gamer Set Dash in the Fundraising At Dundalk Maiden.

After tasting defeat with favourites Ardhoomey and Game Set Dash, Ger Lyons and Colin Keane won the rated race with Fog Of War which made most of the running for an emphatic win over Wrood and, according to his trainer “needs a mile and a half and will go for a premier handicap.”


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