Oxx can get back in the Swing

JOHN OXX has not had a very good season, by his high standards, but there have been encouraging signs of late and Swing Pattern can keep the momentum going by landing the Tote Jackpot Guaranteed Median Auction Maiden at Listowel today.

The selection made an excellent start at Killarney last month and, hopefully, will build on that performance.

Swing Pattern was always prominent and battled on doggedly through the final furlong, before going under by half a length to Dermot Weld’s Photo Opportunity.

That contest has been working out quite nicely. Photo Opportunity went on to finish a creditable fourth in a competitive Leopardstown handicap, while the fourth at Killarney, Move, scored at Dundalk subsequently.

Feature event is the Guinness Handicap Hurdle and, as with all races of this nature, one can only be mildly optimistic about finding the winner.

The nod falls on Star Wood, who shaped well when taking a modest conditions hurdle at Downpatrick.

The handicapper, hardly surprisingly, left her on the same mark and connections have now booked useful 5lbs claimer Bryan Cooper.

The Helena Sheahan Memorial Maiden will take little winning and, perhaps, David Wachman's Paraphernalia will prove good enough.

Steppping up to a mile should help, after she was outpaced when fifth to The Grey Revel over six furlongs at Cork.

Laganbank, who left a couple of indifferent efforts behind when impressing at Killarney, gets the vote in the Bumper.


Lifestyle

It came as quite a surprise to learn that I had been writing my Weekend column in the Irish Examiner for 21 years — how the years have flown by and how the food scene has changed in Ireland over those two decades.A letter from Darina Allen, celebrating 21 years writing for The Irish Examiner

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