Friday 17 November 2017

Charlie Bear to keep Donohoe's run going at Dundalk

Jockey Joseph O'Brien
Jockey Joseph O'Brien
Richard Forristal

Richard Forristal

Cavan handler Shane Donohoe has had to change the way he does business in recent years, but he is fast proving as deft at the Flat game as he was over jumps.

For the first 15 years of his training career, Donohoe carved a steady niche for himself at the National Hunt pursuit, enjoying a memorable highlight when Davy Russell and Cregg House landed the 2005 Topham Chase.

Over the last number of years, though, the strained economic reality of the profession forced Donohue to diversify, with the international nature of the Flat market appealing to him, as it has to so many others.

Donohoe heads to Dundalk without a jumps winner since this time four years ago, but with 18 on the level in the same period, half of which have come on his frequent Wolverhampton raids.

His latest winner at the Co Louth facility was last month's decisive maiden victor Charlie Bear. The three-year-old tackles six others in the conditions race this evening, and is nap material under Leigh Roche.

Mick Halford's Five Claw is the danger, but he didn't look to be crying out for seven furlongs when holding on over six here three weeks ago, so tonight's trip might not be ideal for him.

Charlie Bear, on the other hand, thrived over the distance to draw clear in what was a decent maiden, with the form franked since by a number of those behind him.

If he improves for getting his head in front at just the third time of asking, he ought to win again.

In the mile handicap, Donohoe's Etaad, first and second at Wolverhampton last week, has a squeak.

However, preferred is Pat Flynn's top-weight Twistsandturns. Twice a winner over a mile before the turn of the year, Emmet McNamara's mount lost little in defeat when just run out of it by Indian Landing over seven on its latest outing.

Again, that form has been nicely franked by the winner following up and the fourth Corker Hill also winning, so Twistsandturns has a big chance here back over its preferred trip off a pound lower mark.

Joseph O'Brien (pictured above) has two chances to enhance his 33pc (2-6) strike-rate for English-based Tony Carroll, with Salvado possibly the pick of the duo in the opening five-furlong handicap.

James Nash saddles the course regular Shinyhappyjohn in that, and he might be the one to keep on side under Pat Smullen, having twice gone really close here in January.

At the other end of the card, rookie Curragh handler Maria Richert can bag her first win with the Seamie Heffernan-ridden Tennesse Waltz, which steps up to 10 furlongs this time after staying on nicely over a mile first time up.

Irish Independent

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