Wednesday 18 September 2019

Mr Adjudicator takes Guinness Handicap for Willie Mullins on Day Five of Galway Festival

Mr Adjudicator ridden by Kevin Manning on the way to winning the Guinness Handicap during day five of the 2019 Summer Festival at Galway Racecourse. Photo credit: Brian Lawless/PA Wire
Mr Adjudicator ridden by Kevin Manning on the way to winning the Guinness Handicap during day five of the 2019 Summer Festival at Galway Racecourse. Photo credit: Brian Lawless/PA Wire

Thomas Weekes

Mr Adjudicator gained compensation for an unlucky run earlier in the week with victory in the Guinness Handicap, the feature race on day five of the Galway Festival.

The Willie Mullins-trained gelding met trouble in running when a fast-finishing fourth in the Connacht Hotel (Q.R) Handicap on Monday evening, but had better fortune on this occasion.

Kevin Manning elected to commit early after See Of Rome and Miss Snossyboots had forced the pace in the mile-and-a-half prize, and that proved a race-winning move.

All out in the end, the 11-8 market leader had three-quarters of a length to spare over Camphor at the line.

Mullins said: "Kevin was very forceful on him and made up his mind in the dip. I said to him the horse was very sluggish coming out of stalls and to try to get a position on him, and he got a lovely position on him early on.

"He made the horse's mind up in the dip, but said he got there a little too soon.

"It is nice compensation (for Monday) and the horse hadn't been lucky all season until Punchestown (in May) when it came right and it came right again at Autueil."

He added: "I don't know when he last had a break, so we'll have a review of his season and we'll see what is coming up.

"I imagine he could get a break as we have campaigned him hard this season and I think he could improve a lot, as in jumping terms he is young."

Mullins was on the mark earlier with Minella Beau, who again confirmed his liking for the Ballybrit circuit in the Guinness Galway Blazers Handicap Chase.

Ridden by Paul Townend, the eight-year-old was sent off the 4-1 favourite and joined long-time leader Icantsay at the last fence.

Swinging into the straight, Townend's mount powered on up the near-side rail, but the gallant Icantsay refused to go away in the hands of Robbie Power and Mine Now also put down a challenge.

In a thrilling finish, Minella Beau - who had been absent for 218 days - got there by half a length from Icantsay, with Mine Now another two lengths back in third as he filled the same place as last year, and Tesseract fourth.

Mullins said: "I thought Paul got two fine jumps out of him at the final two fences, both times he got lengths and that was the whole difference.

"The second horse put in a huge performance to make the running and we just beat him and if the second jumped the last two as well as we did it would have been a different result, but we were lucky enough on the day.

"Being Annette Mee's horse, a lot of his year revolves around Galway and he'd have to improve a lot to get into the Plate next year. That will be his target next year if he goes up in the weights."

PA Media

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