Sport

Monday 23 April 2018

Willie Mullins' raider Glens Melody wins Warwick listed race

Trainer Willie Mullins
Trainer Willie Mullins

Willie Mullins' rare but powerful raid on Warwick got off to the perfect start when Glens Melody justified 7-4 favouritism in the Levy Board Warwick Mares' Hurdle.

David Casey's mount turned for home with dangers on both sides of her, but in the end it was Mischievous Milly, trained by the jockey's former employer Oliver Sherwood, who threw down the biggest challenge.

As she got the better of the exchange, Glens Melody crossed the second but after a stewards inquiry, her three-quarters-of-a-length triumph was allowed to stand.

Mullins was in Ireland but owner-breeder Fiona McStay said: "She loved the soft ground and the experience of travelling away from Ireland for the first time didn't faze her.

"I bred her and it's my first visit to Warwick. The inquiry was a bit nerve-wracking but actually I didn't see anything wrong."

Casey said: "I think it's my first time here since 2001 and it's good to be back. She's a nice mare."

The Betfred Goals Galore Novices' Chase developed into the expected match between odds-on Black Thunder and Corrin Wood, but it was the spring-heeled jumping of the latter that proved the trump card as the pair played their hands in the final mile.

Corrin Wood consistently out jumped his rival at the fences down the back and Jason Maguire kept the former point-to-pointer right up to his work to prevail by two and a half lengths, with the others beaten 34 lengths and more.

Given a quote of 16-1 for the RSA Chase by Betfred, McCain said: "He'd been very impressive but we didn't know quite how good he was.

"If he'd come here and finished second or third we might have looked at the four-miler, but he'll definitely get an entry for the RSA now.

"When the handicapper gave him a rating of 144 we had to come here - he made up our minds for us. Basically he'd not been the same since being beaten by Gevrey Chambertin at Haydock (in November 2012), but it's been a different story this season."

Venetia Williams sent out her 10th winner in the last fortnight courtesy of Dungeness in the Betfred Goals Galore Novices' Handicap Hurdle.

The 6-1 shot took advantage of the departure of 11-4 favourite Don Pooleoni at the fifth-last to score by four lengths from Bold Cuffs.

Williams said: "The Bellamy syndicate own four horses and wanted a day out, so we are running all four at Warwick and Kempton today.

"This horse has been a bit disappointing until today, it's nice that he's got his nose in front."

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