Without a win since landing the Grade One Scilly Isles Novice Chase at Sandown a year ago, Gitane Du Berlais made all to capture the listed BBA Ireland Ltd Opera Hat Mares Chase in Naas yesterday.
The six-year-old dominated the race and appeared to have market rival Carrigmoorna Rock in trouble when that rival suffered fatal fall at the second last, leaving I’m All You Need to chase home the uneasy 6/5 favourite, with seven lengths separating them at the line.
“She was well entitled wo win at the weights. And it’s great to get her head back in front,” said Patrick Mullins.
“Ruby was very happy with her.”
Hurdling debutant Babbling Stream, ridden by Ruby Walsh, could hardly have been more impressive in the opening maiden hurdle, the 5/4 favourite stretching clear up the hill to slam The Granson by 12 lengths.
Patrick Mullins said: , “That was more what we had been expecting from him. He jumped fantastic and showed a good turn of foot. He’s entered in the Supreme Novices’ and will go straight there.”
Trainer Robert Tyner enjoyed a measure of compensation for the earlier death of Carrigmoorna Rock when Fairly Legal justified 7/4 favouritism in the Follow Naas Racecourse On Facebook Maiden Hurdle.
Ridden by Saturday’s Irish Gold Cup hero Mark Walsh, Fairly Legal travelled and jumped well before mastering Call It Magic at the final flight and forging clear to triumph by four and a half lengths.
Tyner said: “He settled better today. That was a brilliant display of jumping and he did it nicely.”
A faller on his chasing debut at Fairyhouse, free-going Alisier D’Irlande produced a spectacular front-running display to land the Book Online At naasracecourse.com Beginners Chase.
Ridden by Andrew Lynch, the 4/6 favourite made all, jumping well, and won, unchallenged, by 17 lengths from Never Enough Time.
“It was all about getting him around today,” explained trainer Henry De Bromhead, “He jumped okay, if a bit to his left. He learned plenty and we learned plenty the last day. He’ll be a much better horse on better ground.”
Jim Dreaper saddled his third winner of the week, when Mr Cosmopolitan (12/1) won the Panoramic Restaurant Handicap Hurdle under amateur Jamie Flynn, who was enjoying his first success since January 2014.
“He’s been out in a field and has only been ridden four times since Leopardstown,” explained Dreaper, “He’s a bit of an enigma. He jumped brutal the last day. And I’d say he won’t run over fences again.”
Local trainer Tom Taaffe enjoyed a welcome change of luck when Rogue Trader won the two-mile Hospitality At Naas Handicap Chase at the expense of Marvellous Moment and top-weight Leap Dearg.
“It’s good to see him winning,” said Taaffe.
Gigginstown House Stud recorded a one-two in the bumper, with their only runners of the day, as the Noel Meade-trained A Genie In Abottle, up front throughout, held fellow 2/1 joint-favourite Blood Crazed Tiger by a half-length.
The winner was Katie Walsh’s first winner for Meade, who said: The horse was tough today, and the jockey was tough too.”
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