Saturday 24 March 2018

Knockfierna worth the wait

AFTER the long wait, punters at Limerick were yesterday treated to a feast of thrilling finishes as the action at the Patrickswell venue finally got under way.

The day's featured Dorans Pride Novice Hurdle produced a cracking climax as the Charles Byrnes-trained Knockfierna showed real courage under Niall Madden to fend off the challenge of Start Me Up by the minimum margin.

There was another exciting finish in the two mile, five furlong maiden hurdle as Paul Nolan's Golden Sunbird came out best after a titanic duel with Out Now.

The spoils rested between the pair from a long way and even though Out Now hit the front after the final flight, Michael Doran got a strong rally from Golden Sunbird in the final 100 yards.

Supporters of Tommy Stack's Mister Carter were rewarded on his debut over hurdles in the three-year-old maiden. Billy Lee's mount (9/2) got the better of favourite Tillahow by two and a half lengths.

There was a shock in the Mares Novice Chase as the odds-on hotpot Shirley Casper got turned over by the Daniel Murphy-trained second-favourite Gentle Alice by 12 lengths.

Those who took note of the eyecatching booking of Katie Walsh for the Jimmy Mangan-trained Castle Wings in the closing bumper were rewarded as the son of Winged Love made an impressive debut on the track.

A half-brother to the classy Conna Castle, Walsh had her mount well off the pace in the opening stages but the 10/1 shot showed that he has stamina in abundance as he came through to get the better of Around A Pound.

Irish Independent

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