Weekend Takeaways: from Listowel, Navan and Wexford

Monday, September 09, 2019
Mickey Sheehy

The Ladys Bid gives Mikey Sheehy his first winner when taking the first division of the 1m 2f apprentice handicap. Navan

Flynn under doctor’s orders

It was an emotional day for Margaret Flynn as her wonderful servant, Dr Mikey upset the odds in the Kerrymaid Hurdle as Listowel’s Harvest Festival got under way yesterday.

The son of Dr Massini, who was also bred by his trainer, was sent to the front by Donie McInerney and was never headed. Odds-on favourite Stratum moved to challenge two out but could not peg back his 10-year-old rival.

This was a sixth win from 21 runs for Dr Mikey, who has not been hugely busy in his career, having suffered a ruptured tendon and thus only been run with an ease in the ground.

Flynn admitted that she shed a tear after, such is her depth of feeling for her star and on this evidence, with the conditions suiting, he is not finished yet.


Brave Wicklow States his case

Has there ever been a horse like Wicklow Brave? A winner of classic when taking the Irish St Leger, the Willie Mullins-trained gelding is also a Cheltenham Festival winner, who has now enjoyed a very exciting start to his chasing career.

There cannot be too many classic victors who have won over fences but after beginning to give his hurdles little respect, Mullins decided that larger obstacles might focus his charge’s mind and as usual, he has been proven spot on.

The ability to jump at speed was crucial as Rachael Blackmore served it up to the favourite on Jan Maat in the Cheestrings Novice Chase at Listowel and Paul Townend had to ask his partner for a big one at the last.

Wicklow Brave answered the call and was always going to have too much toe on the run to the line to make it three from three over the larger obstacles.

Mullins is now targeting the America Grand National at Far Hills next month before returning to Ireland for a shot at the Crinmore Chase in November.

Firsts on the double at Navan

Connections in winners’ enclosures always have broad smiles but Navan will be a favourite for Siobhán Rutlege and Mikey Sheehy in particular, after the duo both rode their first winners on the track.

Sheehy, a brother of Danny and son of trainer ‘Dusty’, and with a glittering career on the pony-racing circuit behind him, was first to shed his maiden status in the first division of the Magic Pumpkin Festival Navan Apprentice Handicap.

Showing polish, the 16-year-old cajoled The Lady’s Bid to a head victory over Alice Milligan and it was a particularly memorable day for the family, as his father celebrated with a double at Wexford.

Rutledge was very tidy in getting Magic Gal up to deny Lady Rosebud by a nose in the second division and that was no mean feat, given that it was Gavin Ryan she was getting the better of. Described by John McConnell as his right-hand woman in the yard, Rutledge is likely to get plenty of opportunities from the trainer, who said “she definitely has a career ahead of her”.

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