Tuesday 20 March 2018

Kakagh back from Wilderness

Thomas Kelly

Front-running tactics proved successful as Kakagh returned to his best under Barry Geraghty in the featured Wilderness Chase at Clonmel yesterday.

Available at 11/2 in the morning and backed from 4/1 into 3/1 on track, the Bill Harney-trained gelding was strongly pressed early in the straight by both On The Way Out (5/2) and Prince Of Fire (16/1), with all three virtually in the air together at the second last.

However, Kakagh, successful in a Naas novice chase 12 months ago before losing his way a bit last season, dug deep for Geraghty on the run-in to beat Prince Of Fire by three-quarters of a length, with On The Way Out a further two lengths back in third.

Knockfierna, the 9/4 favourite, was unable to find any extra in the straight and finished sixth.

Harney said: "I told Barry just to get a lead over the first and do what he liked after that. He really came alive when he was challenged."

Noras Fancy supplemented her recent Galway win with a clear-cut success in the Powerstown Desmene Handicap Hurdle,

Carrying a 6lb penalty following her maiden triumph just four days earlier, Jimmy Mangan's mare was sent off a well-backed 100-30 chance and lived up to expectations.

Booted into a clear lead before the approach to the straight, Noras Fancy skipped further clear under a confident Paddy Mangan and ultimately had 11 lengths in hand over Monahullan Prince, with Black Mac and Burnswood filling the placings.

Davy Russell timed it to perfection on John Supple's 9/2 chance Blackwell Synergy in the Graham Norris Memorial Handicap Hurdle.

The recent Listowel runner-up was waited with until the final flight, at which Russell pushed the button and he leapt past Datokepe before staying on strongly to score by half a length.

A Little Swifter (7/1) got off the mark over timber in the Cahir Mares Maiden Hurdle. In front from the off, Michael Winters' five-year-old enjoyed herself at the head of affairs under Declan Bates and was already well in charge before Meitheamh left her clear when falling at the last.

Favourite Taraval stayed on for second but was two and three-quarter-lengths down at the line.

Meanwhile, Clinical dug deep for jockey Seb Sanders to give trainer Mark Prescott success in the Listed EBF Normandie Stud Fleur De Lys Fillies' Stakes at Lingfield.

Winner of a similar event in Germany last month, the Cheveley Park Stud-owned daughter of Motivator hung on by a neck from the fast-finishing morning gamble Sooraah.

Prescott said of the 7/1 winner, who was providing Cheveley Park Stud with the second leg of a double: "She could go for a Listed race at Dundalk (Cooley Fillies Stakes next Friday) if she comes out of this well."

Ralph Beckett and Jim Crowley secured Listed honours when Charleston Lady (14/1) beat Roxy Flyer by a head, with the well-backed favourite Cill Rialaig a further neck away.

Frankie Dettori received the applause of a fair crowd when guiding 15/8 favourite Grizzle to a length victory over Protanto in the British Stallion Studs Supporting British Racing EBF Maiden Stakes.

Chris Wall's Citrus Star, returned at 13/2, was another to take it up inside the last furlong and he stayed on well to master Seek The Fair Land by two and a half lengths in the Join Hot To Trot Racing Club Handicap.

Luke Rowe looked a rider to follow when galvanising Rio Royale (7/1) to victory in the concluding Plawhatch Apprentice Handicap for trainer Amanda Perrett.

Irish Independent

Sport Newsletter

The best sport action straight to your inbox every morning.

Editor's Choice

Also in Sport