DUROOB, trained by Oliver Brady for Rita Shah, outstayed his rivals to land the featured Leo Dolan Memorial Handicap Hurdle at Roscommon last night.
The tough eight-year-old, successful at Down Royal in May, took over from front-running Dream Honours at the second last obstacle before stretching clear to score by nine lengths, with Hoopy third. A sizeable group gathered around the winner’s enclosure, anticipating another ‘performance’ by ebullient winning trainer Brady who ended his mini-oration by asking for a rousing ‘three cheers’ for his beloved Monaghan.
Afterwards, Brady explained: “He’s only 15.2 hands, the smallest horse in the race, but he’s in some form and the young lad (Matthew Bowes) is riding well. He’ll definitely be going to Galway now.”
Claimer Bryan Cooper, who returned to action after a broken collar-bone at Bellewstown on Sunday, was on the mark again when First Beauty, trained by his boss Dessie Hughes, landed the Oran Novice Hurdle at the expense of the flattering Hepahepa Naeney.
Flamenco Prince stretched into a clear lead, with the winner leading the main group throughout, before edging ahead after the fourth last flight. Headed by the runner-up after the second last, First Beauty fought back on the run-in to triumph by two lengths.
A delighted Bryan Cooper explained: “After what happened in the first, I didn’t want to let the leader away. I felt I had to chase her sooner than I planned. The effort got to her and she emptied at the back of the second last. But she got her second wind and came back strong to win cosily at the finish. She’s a good mare and needs two and a half miles.”
Paul Carberry continued his rich vein of form when Waterloo Chateau, trained by Noel Meade for the County Louth-based Summerwine Syndicate, made all to beat Ardnavalley in the Bet On Course With Tote Maiden Hurdle.
The Presenting gelding, formerly trained by Tom Taaffe, displayed a tendency to jump to his left but responded to Carberry’s driving to score emphatically, proving some return on the promise shown as a bumper horse, when he finished second to recent Ascot Gold Cup winner Rite Of Passage at the Galway Festival.
Regal D’Estruval, trained by Jim Culloty for Dr. Ronan Lamb, landed a bit of a touch in the opening Athleague Maiden Hurdle in the hands of Tom Doyle. Backed from 12/1 to 6/1. The French-bred was soon clear and, jumping with speed and accuracy, never looked in trouble, coasting home seven lengths clear of Mannin Beach.
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