Cotil fall opens door for Castle
Castle Wings was left to open his account over fences in fortuitous fashion after the long odds-on Blood Cotil took a crashing fall at the second last in the McCarthy Insurance Group Beginners Chase at Cork.
Blood Cotil (1/4) was still going well in front on his fencing debut when he hit the penultimate obstacle pretty hard, allowing Jimmy Mangan's charge, ridden by his son Paddy, to come home unchallenged.
The 7/2 chance had been the only one to keep tabs on the Willie Mullins-trained hot-pot, but he looked destined for second place until the demise of the classy five-year-old and jockey Paul Townend. West Council took the runner-up spot, 24 lengths adrift of Castle Wings.
Mullins and Townend had struck with Wicklow Brave (2/5 favourite), which had little difficulty landing the odds in the McCarthy Insurance Group Maiden Hurdle. Winner of his last three bumpers, the five-year-old coasted to a seven-length success on his hurdles bow.
The Mullins team suffered another odds-on reverse when the Dermot Weld-trained Waaheb (7/4) got the better of 8/13 shot Turban in the McCarthy Insurance Group Hurdle.
Turban attempted to make all but Waaheb -- ridden by Mark Walsh -- put in a really strong challenge from the third last and pulled away on the run-in to score by a length and a half.
Avondhu Lady (6/4 favourite) made the most of a lower mark over the smaller obstacles when bounding away with the McCarthy Insurance Group Mares Handicap Hurdle under Bryan Cooper. David Fenton's nine-year-old had four-and-a-half lengths to spare over Evesham Star in second.