Oneeightofamile makes amends for Galway loss
Young jockey David Splaine teamed up with veteran Waterford trainer John Kiely to land the featured JP McManus Hurdle with Oneeightofamile at Cork yesterday.
With favourite Won In The Dark tailing off four from home, Splaine took the initiative on Kiely's charge and kicked clear. De Valira tried to give chase but had no answer to the 6/4 winner, which came home five lengths to the good.
"He's very consistent and he was unlucky in Galway. Stalls were completely new to him and he just walked out. It is very hard to make up the ground there when that happens," said Kiely.
"It is great that he recovered well enough to come here. He'll have to stay in conditions hurdles as he can't give weight away. He'll probably have to go chasing when we run out of options."
Davy Russell, rider of the disappointing Won In The Dark, gave up his mount in the following race and this enabled Paul Townend to step in for a winning ride on the Charles Byrne-trained Adropaupep, which recorded a two-and-a-half-length victory over Paddy The Ref.
First-time blinkers worked their magic on Eoin Doyle's For A Finish, which ran out a game winner of the www.mallow.ie Hurdle.
Favourite Ninth Legion took up the running on the back straight, but Shay Barry was alert to the danger and stalked the market leader until pulling alongside him on the home straight.
Ninth Legion put up a good fight after the last, but For A Finish found plenty to score by two lengths.
Rebel Fitz overcame a bit of pre-race adversity to justify favouritism in the opening maiden hurdle.
The victorious French-bred son of Agent Bleu got loose for a while when going out on to the track and indeed sweated up a fair bit too. However, in the race he travelled well and readily saw off the next two in the market, Park Ranger and Buy Back Bob. "He did the job well enough there though and maybe we'll think about Listowel now," said trainer Michael Winters.
Tom Treacy executed a plan to perfection in getting Bachelor Affair home in the Cork Handicap Hurdle.
The jockey built up a huge lead on Gerard Mullins' 7/1 chance with a circuit to go and though his lead diminished rapidly close to home, he held off the dead-heating pair of Akinspirit and Green To Gold by two lengths.
Galway Hurdle-winning trainer Paul Flynn kept his excellent run of form going when Fearchar finished the best of a five-way sprint to the line in the Martinstown Opportunity Handicap Hurdle.
At Naas, meanwhile, Jim Bolger's Tiffilia battled on well under Kevin Manning to deny the fast-finishing Empresario and Buffalo Billy by two necks in the opening seven-furlong juvenile maiden. Tommy Stack's Moldowney was punted from a morning price of 28/1 down to 4/1 at the off, but the son of Dalakhani could only finish eighth after giving way a furlong out.
Manning went on to complete a double when Jim Gorman's Rigid Rock made a mockery of his 25/1 odds when romping away with the 20-runner six-furlong handicap
Colm O'Donoghue made all on Eddie Lynam's French Emperor to record a comfortable success in the six-furlong auction contest for two-year-olds.
The son of Holy Roman Emperor bounced out of stall one well, grabbed an uncontested lead on the rail, and was never headed in coming home a length and a half clear of Pitlochry.