There was real drama in the final of the Gain Feeds Select Stakes on Saturday night at Waterford, from which the tremendously consistent Southest Suzie emerged victorious for Daniel Frayne of Wexford.
In a race packed with early pace, something had to give and, unfortunately, two runners tumbled out of the race as they turned into the backstraight. Laurels winner Vimmerby held a narrow lead over Newlawn Impact, with Farloe Calvin also very close as they galloped the opening bends.
The three tangled at the entrance to the back stretch, at which point Vimmerby and Newlawn Impact were both knocked over. That left Farloe Calvin in front, with Southest Suzie assuming second position as they raced for halfway.
When the latter moved to challenge the leader at the third turn, a great battle ensued and, despite swinging wide off the last bend, the bitch asserted to win by half a length, in 28.75.
For the second consecutive year, Farloe Calvin was narrowly denied the €€13,000 winner’s prize, having been caught late by kennel companion Vanrooney 12 months ago. Record holder Paradise Maverik, who had been caught up in the trouble at the second bend, ran on powerfully to take third place, five lengths behind the runner-up.
The victory was a deserved change of luck for Southest Suzie, who had finished a close fourth behind Newinn Expert in the Munster Oaks over course and distance in September, and third behind Leamaneigh Mags in the final of the Newbridge Oaks last month.
Punters who played the short odds on Vulturi to take the first semi-final of the Kerry Agribusiness Irish St Leger at Limerick got their fingers burnt as the 2-5 chance had to settle for second place behind Castleivy Crash.
Cloon Glory led around, with the eventual winner in second and the favourite nicely poised in third. The front two got away from the third as they raced to halfway and Castleivy Crash, trained by Denis O’Malley, quickened sharply to lead at the third turn.
A strong stayer, he opened up a clear lead and kept on well to beat the fast-finishing favourite by a length and a half, in 29.78, with Borna Central getting up late to deny Cloon Glory the third spot in the final.
Ballyana Foxtrot took the second semi-final for James Roche and the Limerick Quartet Syndicate, Askeaton. Burgess Oscar was first to show and was almost a length clear when clipped from behind leaving the second bend. The eventual winner quickened to the front at that point, while Burgess Oscar recovered remarkably well to hold second position.
The latter tried hard to get to Ballyana Foxtrot but his effort came up a length and a half shy of the 30.03 winner, with Paradise Silva staying on to grab third place, six and a half further back.
The Comerford Cakes National Puppy Stake got under way at Shelbourne, and Tyrur Tommy, owned by PJ Fahy, Glenamaddy, set the standard with his 28.20 return. Out of a half-sister to the very smart Ciaras Castle, the February pup quickened away from the second bend for an impressive victory.
The early pace of Bubbly Zeus (formerly Above The Clouds) is likely to carry him deep in this competition, and the November ’12 whelp brought his tally to six wins from seven outings with a smooth trap-to-line success in heat four, posting 28.47 for trainer Ollie Bray.
That completed a double for the trainer and for the Kinloch Brae x Royal Mission as Dark Intentions had taken the previous heat. He had a real battle but asserted late for a three length victory over Droopys Bomber, in 28.73.
Youghal Red Mills Bitch Unraced Stake winner Priceless Lassie overcame trouble to get her bid off to a winning start in heat one. The Paul Hennessy-trained 4-6 chance led late for a length victory over Steeple Rd Vic, in 28.66.
There were also good winning efforts from Edward Dervan’s Killoe Dan (28.56), the Pat Buckley-trained View The Moon (28.82), the Rachel Wheeler-trained Cunning Barney and Gerry Merriman’s Highview Jayne (28.67).
Leger final trap draw: 1. Vulturi, 2. Paradise Silva, 3. Castleivy Crash, 4. Borna Central, 5. Burgess Oscar, 6. Ballyana Foxtrot (m).
lWe regret that, due to a technical error, the incorrect Around The Tracks column appeared in Monday Sport.
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