Sport Horse Racing

Sunday 21 January 2018

Explorer overcomes Mayhem for O'Brien

Aidan O'Brien trainer. Picture: Julien Behal/PA Wire.
Aidan O'Brien trainer. Picture: Julien Behal/PA Wire.

HAVING recorded a brilliant five-timer at Naas on Wednesday, Aidan O'Brien had to settle for a solitary visit to the winner's enclosure at Leopardstown.

Great Explorer justified favouritism under son Joseph when outbattling Minister Of Mayhem to land the 10-furlong handicap.

O'Brien Jnr hard to work hard in the closing stages but the 5/6 favourite kept finding more and resisted Minister Of Mayhem's late charge by half a length.

Waver was one of O'Brien's five winners at Naas, but he could not repeat the dose 24 hours later as Weather Watch scooted clear in the 'Ryan Sheridan' Handicap.

Joining Waver and Night Invader approaching the furlong pole, Jessica Harrington's 13/2 chance quickened up to pull clear of Night Invader.

O'Brien Jnr – who rode four of his father's five winners at Naas – did manage to record a double thanks to a convincing victory aboard the Tom Mullins-trained Fosters Cross in the 14-furlong handicap.

Feasta foiled a big gamble on Late Rosebud when getting up late to pip that rival in the Follow Leopardstown On Facebook Maiden at Leopardstown.

Dermot Weld's Late Rosebud was backed into 4/5 favouritism and broke smartly, looking to make every yard.

However, Feasta (7/1) put her head down up the straight and Jim Bolger's charge picked up really well in the final furlong for Kevin Manning, who was able to start easing down near the line as she scored by a neck.

Saxo Jack got the better of odds-on favourite Al Destoor to capture the opening juvenile maiden. Ger Lyons' 5/1 chance put the race to his rivals under Gary Carroll, but kept finding plenty to beat the market leader by three and a half lengths.

Captain Cullen finished much the strongest to land the apprentice handicap under the in-form Colin Keane, who is proving excellent value for his claim.

The 16/1 chance looked to have ground to make up on Knights Templar after bursting out of the pack a furlong out, but Gerard Keane's charge finished with a flourish to score by half a length.

Michael Halford and Shane Foley combined to take the closing fillies' maiden with Drifting Mist (7/2).

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