Mullins on the double again
HAVING notched a double on the Flat at Roscommon on Monday, champion national hunt trainer Willie Mullins resumed normal service as he recorded a brace over jumps at the same venue last night.
The Closutton handler first saw his Letherbelucky get back to winning ways in the Oran Novice Hurdle as Paul Townend roder her to a a comfortable four and a half length win over Audrelles Lad.
"She jumped well and stuck at it well," Townend said of the favourite. "They went a good even gallop. She switches off well and is very straightforward."
Winner No 2 came courtesy of yet another bumper winner for the yard as son Patrick guided Connaught Manor to an impressive success in the two and half mile contest with a 14-length triumph from Top Cat Henry. "All I was trying to do during the race was to get him to settle as he can be a bit keen. He will probably go two and a half to three miles over hurdles and he would like better ground," said the winning rider.
Another father and son team were earlier on the mark as the Athleague Maiden Hurdle went to outsider Medical Compound for trainer Eric and rider Emmet McNamara.
The son of Dr Fong, which was having just his second start for McNamara after coming from Kevin Ryan's yard in England, closed on the leaders after the third last flight and hit the front on the run to the last. The 16/1 shot stayed on stoutly on the run-in to hold off the even money favourite Tepalo by two lengths.
The feature event went to Our Eric which defied his veteran status under Robbie Colgan to capture the Leo Dolan Memorial Handicap Hurdle for Cecil Ross. The 11-year-old challenged Boland's Corner at the final flight before securing a three-length success.
James Nash's Moscow Storm took the Martinstown Opportunity Maiden Hurdle in the hands of Ben Dalton.