reasons to smile
McCreery really kicked his season into gear with a treble at Gowran Park
yesterday, thanks to Arabeska, Come September and Up Helly Aa, all ridden by
the on-fire Billy Lee.
for the son of Galileo had particular resonance for trainer and jockey as the
first foal and first runner for Fiesolana, the filly who provided them with
their first Group 1 triumph in the Matron Stakes in 2014.
very impressive success set the seal on a memorable weekend for the Curragh handler,
who was also on the mark with Black Martini at Down Royal on Friday.
the track, there was plenty to be happy about too. Twenty years ago, McCreery
was one of the leading Gaelic football midfielders in the country, when Anthony
Tohill, John McDermott, Kevin Walsh, Darragh Ó Sé and fellow Kildare man Niall
Buckley were among the top exponents.
was a driving force as Kildare ended a 32-year lean spell to win a Leinster
Championship in 1998 and they reached the All-Ireland Final that season. Galway
just got the better of them however and that remains the closest the Lilies
have gotten to ultimate success since 1928.
was always going to be the priority for the son of the late leading
conditioner, Peter McCreery Snr but the Clane man remains an ardent football
follower, having also been a selector with Kildare after his retirement from
All Whites made no mistakes at the second time of asking against Longford in
their Leinster Championship quarter-final replay on Sunday and now face the
might of five-in-a-row chasing Dublin in next Sunday’s semi-final.
wouldn’t mind having Big Willie back patrolling the middle for that one.
to be Crosse about at Down Royal
might not have been unique but it must have been a very rare occurrence indeed
when two brothers, both apprentices, rode doubles at Down Royal on Friday
is the reigning champion apprentice, having only recorded his first winner in
April of last year on G Force, a race in which older brother Nathan was back in
sixth. A fruitful association with Joseph O’Brien propelled him to championship
honours and after recording 22 winners during that campaign, he is now on nine
thanks to a weekend that yielded four triumphs.
17-year-old from Cahir was shown the way initially by Nathan, who brought his
tally to three with a second-and-third-race double, on the aforementioned Black
Martini for McCreery and Polly Douglas for Kieran Cotter.
was time for Shane to respond and he did thanks to his young boss, propelling
Owning Hill residents Shakespear’sgallery and A Wave Of The Sea to the winner’s
pair combined successfully once more at Navan the following day when Shane got
Air Force Jet’s nose in front right on the line for Qatar Racing in the Lynn
Lodge Stud Irish EBF Maiden. Shane was fourth, third, third and sixth in his
remaining engagements. Nathan also got a good tune out of Rag’s Tatter to
finish second in the Come Racing Saturday 8th June Handicap.
was back in business again at Listowel on Sunday, steering On A Session to a
neck success for the interesting new Theresa Marnane-Aidan Fogarty partnership.
delivers after brush with disaster
Doyle is known for his strength and regularly leads the way in Wayne Middleton’s
gym sessions for jockeys as part of the Jockey Pathway programme. That
conditioning wouldn’t have done him any harm when he was kicked in the parade
ring by Fr Gilligansvoyge at Kilbeggan on Sunday, though perhaps not as
beneficial as might have been, given the tender area in receipt of the blow
from the six-year-old son of staying legend Yeats.
will be on hold for a while” tweeted Doyle afterwards, regarding his own future
siring potential, and in confirmation of how fortunate he was to escape more
he dusted himself down despite the inevitable discomfort to finish third in the
Summer Party Pack Discount Handicap Hurdle before coming out just over an hour
later and piloting Don’t Let Go to victory in the Kilmurray’s Homevalue
Hardware Handicap Chase.
Let Go is trained by Doyle’s boss Conor O’Dwyer and owned by JP McManus. It was
a special victory for the McManus family as Don’t Leg Go is a homebred, out of
Noreen McManus’ Alflora broodmare Mem O’Rees.
sire? The same as Fr Gilligansvoyage’s – Yeats. No hard feelings Ricky!
reminder of how injury is an ever-present in National Hunt racing and how the
breaks can be metaphoric as well as literal, was Kevin Brouder registering his
sixth winner of a lightning start to the new campaign for a conditional rider.
Listowel talent was third choice to do the steering but he didn’t mind. Trainer
Paul Gilligan’s son Liam was sidelined by a dislocated shoulder suffered the
previous week. Evan Daly was next in line but he fell by the wayside on
Saturday night when breaking his collarbone.
is in form and was available. Bad luck for his colleagues proved good luck for
him and the early pacesetter in the conditional jockeys’ table illustrated his
ability and current high levels of confidence to guide rank outsider Paddy Buns
to a gutsy success in the Adare Manor Opportunity Maiden Hurdle.