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Chester to Cork route sees O'Brien fly home on Chicago

Joseph O'Brien flew back from his big-race double at Chester to ease odds-on favourite Chicago to a maiden victory at Cork last night.

Again riding for his father Aidan, the young jockey sat in second aboard the 2/11 hotpot for most of the mile trip as Captain May led them along.

Once Chicago moved up to challenge early in the straight the race was quickly over, and the son of Montjeu cleared right away to beat Cebuano by six lengths.

Gordon Lord Byron is in cracking form and Tom Hogan's sprinter picked up a decent prize to follow up last week's Tipperary victory.

The improving four-year-old was second for most of the six-furlong conditions race as favourite Croisultan led the way and, after Fran Berry pushed him into the lead a quarter of a mile out, he ran on powerfully to beat Six Of Hearts by two and a quarter lengths.

Pat Martin's Versilia Gal, the only one with experience in the four-runner field for the two-year-old fillies' maiden, was sent off the 1/3 favourite, but made heavy weather of getting home in front.

She led by a couple of lengths coming into the straight, but both Truly Madly and Indigo Ridge just about headed her on either side before Pat Smullen got to work and drove her back up to win by a neck.

Michael Halford's Barrow Island just made it home under Shane Foley to land the spoils in the 10-furlong handicap after Mojita's late challenge came up short by a head. Foley then doubled up on Ken Condon's Montebell in the 12-furlong fillies' maiden.

The Tracey Collins-trained Landsdowne led over a furlong out before getting the better of a tussle with Moscow Treat to take the seven-furlong handicap by half a length under Michael Hussey.

Irish Independent