The eight race card on Sunday featured the Track Supporters Club Guys & Dolls A3 Stake Semi-Finals.
Whilst Sweet Nina took the ‘Dolls’ heat in fine style by clocking 29.30 in scoring for Wexford trainer Aidan Denton, Bit View Froebel went four spots better when justifying favouritism for owners Philip Dillon and Michael O’Riordan to give the ‘Guys’ a narrow advantage ahead of next Sunday’s eagerly awaited decider.
Earlier the best performance of the session over the standard trip was a smart 29.10 posted by Pat Dalton’s very promising Skilled Spree whilst the winning sprint clock of 16.27 by the impressive Mr. Auctioneer and the 30.22 550 run of Derek Kehoe’s Slaneyside Chico were other features.
Race 1 A8/A9 525.
A reserve, Scots Molly, was soon in front in the striped jacket and cruised to an eight length win in 29.67 for trainer Maurice Organ and Carrick-on-Suir owner Noel O’Shea. Marlfield Sarah took second place some six and a half lengths clear of the third Farkland Lass in a well strung out field.
Race 2 S1/S4 300.
Five time winner Mr. Auctioneer added to his tally by exploding from traps and putting his rivals to the sword in very impressive style. Two lengths clear in a flash the son of Scolari Me Daddy romped to a five length win over Amazig Avril and Joyful Lady in a smashing 16.27.
Race 3 A5 525.
Skilled Spree owned and trained by Pat Dalton followed up on his eye catching maiden success three weeks ago by posting a very useful 29.10 which was to prove the fastest clock of the session over the standard trip. Glynnscross Mac and River Ali were early leaders but Skilled Spree challenged at the penultimate turn and swept clear to defeat those rivals by four lengths and two and a half lengths in great style.
Race 4 A3 525.
Two Mitchelstown runners dominated here and Stag Park Wood a winner of six races got back on the winning trail for owner/trainer Richard Pigott when staying on dourly to account for Liam O’Donnell’s early leader Killee Town by a length in 29.95.
Sparta Lexi finished well to fill the third placing another length in arrears of the winner.
Race 5 – The Red Mills A2 525.
Cahir enthusiast Jerry Boles saw his consistent Dream Come True post a third career success in trap to line fashion. Hay Lucky Reem was the leader’s closest challenger in the early stages but Kays Raven put in a strong finish to claim the runner-up spot ahead of Clodeen Bullet which was another doing his best work in the closing stages.
Race 6 A1 550.
The Derek Kehoe owned and trained Slaneyside Chico was very fast away in the white jacket and never gave his rivals a chance to land a blow with a decisive success in a smart 30.22. Clipper Carlton and Monabrogue Rock pursued the leader all the way but made little impression. Slaneyside Chico, formerly known as Nomadic Minstrel has now won four of his seven starts and the son of Eden Brett and Nomadic Sal took the step up to A1 class in his stride.
Races 7 & 8 – The Track Supporters Guys & Dolls A3 Stake Semi-Finals 525.
Race 7 – First Semi-Final (Dolls).
Swift Nina doubled up on her first round win in fine style for the K-Nine – Connection – Syndicate based in Wexford town. The daughter of Vans Escalade broke well and stayed on resolutely to hold off the challenges of Popular Ronnoco and Clogher Well by a length and the same in 29.30 to gain a fifth career victory. Summercourt Girl went off the 6/4 favourite but lost her chance at the opening bend where Parknook Biddy was also in trouble.
Race 8 – Second Semi-Final (Guys).
Bit View Froebel was the 5/4 market leader and gave his supporters no anxious moments by making all the running to come home two lengths clear of Sheeraghs Blaze in 29.26.
The runner-up was baulked at the third bend following a slow start and kept on well whilst the third home Island Flyer was another strong finisher. The winner is owned jointly by Philip Dillon and Michael O’Riordan and will be strongly fancied to claim what looks to be an open final on next Sunday night.
This weekend Clonmel patrons will be in for a treat as the card scheduled for Thursday will instead be run on Saturday evening and will feature the final of the Sureprint/Marions Bookshop A4 Stake. The hugely attractive night of champions meeting at Shelbourne Park will be screened live and should prove a huge attraction.
Thursday November 21
Jetson, which had impressed in the opening round a week ago, continued on his upward curve by making all the running to post a smashing best of the session 29.14 in the second of the Sureprint/Marions Bookshop A4 Stake Semi-finals. Owned and trained in Birr by Thomas Harte, Jetson has now won three of his four races and looks the one they all have to beat in next Saturday’s final. The son of Crash and Pepinstep found his trapping boots for the first time to pulverise the opposition and come home seven lengths clear of Copper Lodge with River Gem a length and a half back in third place.
A little earlier Zippy Sixpence had taken the opening semi in 29.60. Seamus O’Neill’s charge, which had finished a length and a half behind Jetson in the first round, was always prominent before taking over at the penultimate turn and surging clear to account for Skywalker Merlin and an unlucky in running Mala Beach by two and a half lengths and two lengths.
Race 1 N2/N3 525.
Local hope Ballybrien Conor, trained by Kevin McLean for The Rare Auld Stuff Syndicate based in Ballymacarbry, made all the running to take the spoils by the narrowest of margins from the fast finishing Vigorous Alana with Pat Dalton’s even money favourite Coronet eating up the ground late to capture the third spot a length and a half in arrears of the principals. Ballybrien Conor stopped the cock in 29.82.
Race 2 NO 525.
Ballymacarbry was in the news again here as the event marked Tony Doocey’s 70th birthday which was celebrated in style. Despite missing the kick Cloncunny Tiny got a lovely run to the opening bend and scampered clear of her rivals to post a decisive win for Piltown owner/trainer J.J. Scully.
Owenmore Iniesta and Velodrome Laura filled the minor places beaten five and a half and five lengths respectively in 29.58.
Races 3 to 6 –The Alan Rowley Memorial A5/A6 Non-Winners Stake Heats 1 to 4. 525.
Race 3 – Heat 1.
This first leg produced a cracking finish with Heathview Daisy getting up on the rails in the last strides to account for long time leader Hop Out Peg by half a length in 29.68.
Another flying at the death was Triangle Ace which took the third qualifying spot just a short head away. The gritty winner which was opening her account on her 22nd outing is owned in Carrick-on-Suir by Desna Hattemore.
Race 4 – Heat 2.
Gussies Aoife was another to come from behind and Michael Bolger’s bitch had the honour of clocking the fastest time of the round when posting 29.57 to defeat Manami Annie and Clonmoyle Jamie by a length and a short head. Gussies Aoife led off the final bend in a race which saw Cloheena Robbo lead from traps before giving way to Manami Annie on the back straight.
Race 5 – Heat 3.
Hattys Haste got her head in front at the 15th attempt when leading on the run in to account for Genbervie Lass and pacemaker Slaneyside Megan. Owned in Thurles by John Graham Campbell the daughter of Hatty Bluebird won going away by four lengths in 29.92 to finally break her maiden following eight placed efforts.
Race 6 – Heat 4.
Bright Choc owned and trained in Bruree by Mary Lynch, despite missing the kick, got off the mark by leading off the first bend and staying on resolutely to defeat Coolbeggan Honey with Shes So Vain taking the third place. The runner-up closed the gap all the way to the line but was still half a length adrift where it mattered. The winner clocked 29.58 in what looks a wide open stake.
The semi-finals are listed for Saturday next as Clonmel does not race on this Thursday night.
Races 7 & 8 – The Sureprint/Marions Bookshop A4 Stake semi-Finals 525.
Race 7 – Zippy Sixpence 29.60.