Saturday 20 December 2014

Bolger and Manning combine for Killarney double

Published 23/08/2014 | 02:30

Jockey Kevin Manning
Jockey Kevin Manning

JIM Bolger took the training honours at Killarney where he combined with stable jockey Kevin Manning for a 32/1 double.

The main prize on the Flat section of the card was the Easy Clean Limited Rated Race and Bolger's Fiscal Focus showed admirable battling qualities to land the spoils.

As the field turned for home, Manning could be seen going well on the 9/2 shot and he threw down his challenge at the furlong pole as David Wachman's Ruler Of France made the best of his way home. There was a terrific duel inside the final 100 yards, but Fiscal Focus stuck to his guns well to win by a half-length.

Manning and Bolger doubled up when debutante Altesse (5/1) stuck on doggedly to catch the odds-on Fastnet Mist inside the final furlong to claim the fillies maiden by three-quarters of a length.

Earlier, Aidan O'Brien's Rule The Waves made it fifth time lucky when capturing the opening nursery in the hands of Seamie Heffernan.

Appearing to relish the step-up to a mile, the son of War Front was settled towards the rear before making steady progress two furlongs out and galloping on relentlessly to win easily by four and three-parts of a length from Yulong Xiongba.

The featured handicap hurdle saw the Galway Hurdle form endorsed as the third home at Ballybrit, The Game Changer, captured the spoils in the hands of Johnny Burke.

Charlie Swan's five-year-old, running in the colours of Gigginstown House Stud, made smooth progress up the home straight before jumping into the lead at the last and seeing off Queen Alphabet by three-parts of a length. Burke, who turned professional just three months ago, went on to complete his first-ever double when taking the closing maiden hurdle aboard Discover Wexford for Willie Codd.

Luke Dempsey partnered his first winner over hurdles as Philip Fenton's On My Own landed the Martinstown Opportunity Handicap Hurdle.

Having already registered 14 winners on the Flat, the stylish young rider had the ten-year-old gelding up with the pace throughout and the 16/1 outsider knuckled down well to hold off Itsonthelist by half a length.

Elsewhere, Jamie Spencer's retirement on Thursday may have been a shock, but yesterday's announcement that Andrea Atzeni will replace him as first jockey at Qatar Racing was more predictable, as was Oisin Murphy's appointment as his understudy. The positions will come into effect from from January 1 next.

Irish Independent

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