Tuesday 20 March 2018

Gold Bullet hits target for Taaffe in Clonmel

Mikey Fogarty
Mikey Fogarty

Thomas Kelly

Gold BULLET confirmed himself a chaser of some promise when coming out on top in Clonmel's Suir Valley Chase yesterday.

The Tom Taaffe-trained seven-year-old was fancied for the Kim Muir at Cheltenham but finished in mid-division.

He seemed to relish this smaller field here and, after challenging the front-running Baily Green at the second-last, where big danger You Must Know Me fell, he stuck to his task to triumph by two and a half lengths.

Those who took the 8/11 about Nickname Exit in the Goatenbridge Maiden Hurdle were made to sweat a bit but he eventually prevailed with a little bit up his sleeve.

Ruby Walsh had to roust the odds-on favourite along some way from home, but he knuckled down well enough to hit the front at the second-last and kept going to cross the line three and three-quarter lengths ahead of Master Appeal.

Hitting the deck in a point-to-point was hardly the ideal preparation, but Knockrea bounced back just 11 days later to claim the spoils in the Ardfinnan Maiden Hurdle.

Adrian Heskin produced the 9/2 chance to challenge Tongie at the last and he found more on the run to the line to prevail by two and a quarter lengths.

Mikey Fogarty (left) was taken to hospital for checks on his right leg after a crashing fall from Oscar Invitation in the Holy Thursday Handicap Hurdle, won by Jo Go at 20/1.

Turf Club medical officer Dr Adrian McGoldrick said: "He has a concussion and has been referred to hospital for X-rays on a possible fracture in his right leg. He will be automatically stood down for six days."

Fogarty's mount in the following Slievenamon Beginners Chase was taken by Johnny Burke, who subsequently guided the Mary Louise Hallahan-trained Deano (3/1) to a 13-length success from The Herds Garden.

Irish Independent

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