A mixed seven race card which offered free admission to ladies provided something for everybody with the very competitive sporting aspect of the evening strongly supported by supplementary activities which included a fashion show and music.
The early action featured four flat events all run over a mile and a quarter but it was the three National Hunt races which produced most interest although overall successes for local trainers Edward O’Grady who completed a fine double, Tommy Stack and Pat Flynn were well received by the good sized attendance.
Tommy Stack who is based in Thomastown, Golden got the evening off to a successful start for many patrons with the success of his filly Queens Visit which justified even money favouritism in the opening Irish Stallion Farms European Breeders Fund Fillies Maiden. The mount of Wayne Lordan who is riding at the peak of his form, Queens Visit was content to let the Dermot Weld runner Quick Glimpse make the running before being brought to challenge on the turn for home. The Michael Halford trained Hassaya also made her bid for victory at this stage and got her head in front but the determined favourite was not to be denied and kept on well to take up the running close home and gain the verdict by three quarters of a length from Quick Glimpse with Hassaya half a length back in third place. The winner carried the well known colours of Peter Piller.
This opening event was one of fifty races in the Moyglare 50, a series of flat events for fillies and mares run at twenty Irish courses, supported by the Moyglare Stud to commemorate their 50th birthday and the breeders of the winner The Kingwood Partnership will receive a prize of 600 euro subject to the conditions of the scheme.
Donatis Comet was an odds on chance in the Fethard Maiden and this triple bumper winner was a narrow but deserved winner. Andrew Thornton this year’s Irish Grand National winning jockey had the ride and he did just enough to ensure that his mount gained the spoils with a neck success over market rival No Such Number with Wild China a length and a half back in third place. Donatis Comit is trained in Navan by Patrick Martin who expects that the winner will make a quick re-appearance in a handicap at Fairyhouse on this Wednesday.
The third race of the evening was the Girls Night Out at Clonmel Races Handicap for which Porterman was well supported to 5/2 favourite. Joanna Morgan’s charge made little impression however in finishing sixth behind the 11/2 chance Castle Guest which made all the running. Despite being eased down in the closing stages Castle Guest still had four and a half lengths in hand of runner-up Everything Zain at the line.
Shane Foley gave the winner an enterprising ride and had his rivals in trouble a long way from home. Castle Guest is trained in Doneany, Co. Kildare by Michael Halford.
Next up was the Jossestown Handicap which produced the major upset of the evening.
Night Singer was the 3/1 market leader but was soon ridden and made little impression as Florry Knox led inside the final furlong and stayed on well to account for The Fox Tully by three and a half lengths with Solo Whisper three lengths back in third place. The winner was returned at 25/1 and paid odds of over 48/1 on the tote. Florry Knox is trained in Rathgormack, Carrick-on-Suir by Pat Flynn and was partnered by Michael Hussey. The trainer was doubly represented in the race and fancied his other runner Captain Baldini which ran poorly.
Edward O’Grady sent out the 7/4 favourite Crocus Bay to take the Funky Friday BBQ Race Evening June 15th Maiden Hurdle, the first leg of a fine double for both the trainer and rider Barry Geraghty. Crocus Bay tracked the leaders before staying on under pressure to take the spoils by a length and a quarter from market rival Roadtoabbeyfeale. Coffey’s Pub finished third some eight and a half lengths back. The trainer revealed that he was disappointed not to have won a bumper with Crocus Bay which ‘will be kept going’.
The penultimate event of the session was The Powerstown Park Handicap Hurdle over two and a half miles and this proved an open betting race with the layers going 9/2 the field. Heading the market was Don’t Tell Pa and there was big support also for the well touted eleven-year-old Clonsilla Affairs down to 11/2. Clonsilla Affairs which had performed well on his most recent outing at Downpatrick landed a few nice bets in winning by a length from Never Bold with the other placings going to Hevelius and the favourite.Dont Tell Pa. Mr. J. P. McKeown was the successful rider and the winner was handled by new trainer James Brennan.
The O’Grady and Geraghty doubles were completed by the 4/1 chance Tugboat in the concluding Clonacody Maiden Hurdle. Bulgaden was a warm favourite at 6/4 but could only finish fourth behind Tugboat which scored by two and three quarter lengths from the 50/1 outsider Dreaming On with the well supported Ancient Days eight and a half lengths back in third place. Tugboat which had finished third on his last outing in Clonmel is a Galileo gelding and he is owned by Thomas Barr.
The next meeting at Clonmel will be the major Funky Friday BBQ meeting on Friday, June 15 for which tickets are available at an all-in price of j25 to include admission, race card, j5 drink voucher and BBQ meal.
This Thursday evening the local racing scene moves to Tipperary where an all National Hunt card should attract a fine attendance. The action will begin at 5-40 p.m. with a maiden hurdle and the evening is being promoted as Youth Raceday.