Henry de Bromhead introduced a promising newcomer in Conrad Hastings to turn over hotpot Don’t Kick Nor Bite in the Hotel Minella Maiden Hurdle in Tipperary.
The five-year-old Flemensfirth gelding was close to the pace throughout, took command turning for home and forged clear, readily, for David Mullins to slam 2/5 shot Don’t Kick Nor Bite by 10 lengths.
“He’s a lovely horse and has been doing some nice bits of work,” explained De Bromhead, “He’s a real chaser in the making.”
The card’s three races for point-to-pointers all went to County Cork stables as odds-on favourite Hurricane Ben followed-up his recent Tramore success with an effortless success in the Glenview & Rathbarry Stud Novice Hunters Chase while both bumpers, sponsored by p2p.ie, went to 14/1 shots, Roger McGrath’s Miss Eyecatcher and the James Motherway-trained Westendorf.
Miss Eyecatcher, from the family of Value At Risk and Miss Orchestra, stayed on dourly for Finny Maguire to wear down Leader’s Choice in the mares bumper, to the delight of trainer McGrath.
“She was unfortunate not to win in Killeagh, but has a staying pedigree,” he said. “She’s still a big baby, still immature and will improve plenty.”
In the finale, Johnny Barry got Westendorf home ahead of Naturally Blond, prompting his trainer James Motherway to admit: “It has been a long, lean winter — the horses just weren’t right. But this is a nice horse and he has come right in the last few weeks.”
Tom Mullins provided owner JP McManus with a double in the divisions of the Ryans Cleaning Event Specialists Handicap Hurdle as Scoir Mear (Barry Geraghty) and Spider Web (Mark Walsh) justified favouritism.
The McManus colours were carried by four of the 16 runners in the Kedrah House Stud Well Chosen’ Beginners’ Chase. But none of them could cope with the Tom Gibney-trained 66/1 shot Stoughan Cross, who made virtually all under Jonathan Moore to defeat Roll It Out by three-quarters of a length.
Blinkered for the first time, Winter Magic, under a determined ride by Davy Russell, landed the Kilfeacle Stud Handicap Chase, getting the better of Nimdani by a length.
The winner is trained by Jimmy Mangan, who said: “He’s been working well but has been very frustrating.”
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