Casey steers Fever Pitch to fifth victory

Fever Pitch, trained by Arthur Moore for JP McManus, won the fifth race of his life when taking the Wilderness Rated Chase at Clonmel yesterday.

The eight-year-old is obviously no star, but is a useful sort at his own level and was given a dashing drive by David Casey.

He made just about all of the running, jumped beautifully and had little trouble holding the heavily backed Too Scoops, who tended to very much run in snatches.

Commented Moore: “I looked at the programme book after his last race and this jumped out at me.

“He’s a super jumper, likes time between his races and so will probably run again in early December. We have nice horses this season.”

The contest was marred, however, by the fall of Robert Tyner’s Kandinski two out. He broke his shoulder and had to be put down, while his rider, Philip Enright, was stood down.

Enright’s misfortune saw Tyner turn to Casey for his Embracing Change in the last, the Clonmel Oil Raceday Thursday 13th November Handicap Chase.

It was a wise decision, with Casey giving the nine-year-old a fine drive to beat the front-running Western Promise cosily in the end.

“He’s in at Thurles next Thursday and might run,” said Tyner. Embracing Change is owned by Finbar O’Neill, father of top English-based flat jockey Dane.

Earlier in the day Tyner’s Sir Abbot went off at 2-7 for the Cashel Maiden Hurdle, but those who took such prohibitive odds hardly enjoyed the experience.

He travelled well through the contest, but had to be asked to go and win his race from the final flight by Philip Enright to beat I Knew Well by a hard earned half a length.

You’d imagine that the best of the winner won’t be seen until he meets a fence, with Tyner confining himself to saying: “That will blow away the cobwebs.”

Eoin Griffin’s horses are back in good shape, following a very quiet period, and he was on the mark again when Jonathan Burke guided Oscar Invitation to victory in the Cahir Mares’ Maiden Hurdle.

Burke took her to the front going to the second last and, despite a tendency to weave about, Oscar Invitation was too strong for Mystic Lass.

“I had no runners for three months, I just didn’t have the horses to run on the ground in the summer,” reported Griffin.

“She has ability, but has had leg problems. That ground was just okay, she wouldn’t want it any quicker.”

The rather frustrating Willie Mullins-trained Wood Breizh put it all together, under an inspired Ruby Walsh drive, to take the three-mile Memorial Handicap Hurdle.

Heading to the final flight you could have thrown a good-sized blanket over seven of the eight runners, as Walsh kidded and cajoled his grey partner to go forward.

Wood Breizh answered the call to forge to the front on the flat and beat Shantou Flyer by a length.

Said Mullins: “We hoped he wanted a trip. That was a big ask for a four-year-old and will take a fair bit out of him.”

Bookmakers got a screamer in the Irish Stallion Farms’ EBF Mares Beginners Chase, victory going to the Eoin Doyle 20-1 shot, Indian Fairy.

Partnered by Adam O’Neill, the winner kept finding up the straight to hold Our Katie by half a length.

The stewards inquired into close riding between the principals approaching the second last, as the second tried to sneak up the inside of Indian Fairy, but an alteration to the placings was never a possibility.

Said Doyle: “That was a good performance, she is a serious mare to jump. We will have a look at a winners’ of one now.”

The Powerstown Demesne Handicap Hurdle was a modest contest, but housed an impressive winner in Shark Hanlon’s Diamond Dame.

Capably handled by Rachel Blackmore, Diamond Dame eased ahead going to the second last and soon stretched away to beat top weight Hard Bought by eight lengths.


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