Mixed Results In The Leger
It was a night of mixed results in Limerick for the quarter finals of this year’s Irish St Leger.
Ballinakill Clare was the only fancied runner to land the spoils, she made an absolute flyer from Trap Two in the opening heat to make the race her own on the run to the corner.
Keeping up a strong gallop to the line she ran out a comfortable five length winner over Chilmark Chaser and Leave At Dawn in 29.64. She remains the only unbeaten runner left in the competition.
Swithins Brae caused a huge upset in the second heat running out a 20/1 winner. This looked the best of the heats on paper but it didn’t go according to the script you could say! They raced in a line to the corner with Jaytee Dutch, Coolavanny Pat and Highview Event leading the charge. Dutch looked like he was going to toe them around but he didn’t seem to run the first turn and ran off it a touch causing trouble to the runners on his outside.
Lenson Rockey seemed to suffer the most and it was game over for him. Swithins Brae missed the break a touch so was able to avoid the trouble, stick to the fence and turn down the far side in front. This youngster has 28.37 on his card in Enniscorthy so he was going to take some catching once getting his head in front. Brae held a length and half lead over Dutch the whole way to the line in 29.84.
Native Chimes is the youngster of the field and he sure isn’t intimidated by his older and more experienced rivals. Chime registered the second win of his short career last weekend in a time of 30.13. Don’t be put off by the time here however as he didn’t get the cleanest of runs around bends one and two and really had to battle hard to hold his position.
Chimes showed plenty of boot down the far side to overtake Burgess Dubh just before the penultimate corner. Turning for home, Chimes did start to show signs of fatigue but did just enough to hold out for the win from Burgess Dubh in second and the fast finishing Country Legend in third. Oaks heroine Witches Belle was the biggest causality in the race after getting into serious bother at the opening turn.
Priceless Brandy went to traps a red hot 2/5 favourite for the last of the heats but left himself with an awful lot to do by walking out of the traps. Instead it was High St Jesse who took a flyer and made every yard of the running.
The outsider of the field Arclight Bolt chased her as best he could but could never get within striking distance in second place while the jolly Brandy safely booked his place in next week’s semi-final back in third. 29.87 was the winning time here!
The two semi-finals next week look to be evenly divided on paper. Jaytee Dutch will no doubt open up favourite for the opening semi-final and if he can hold his ground on the inside at the corner he should win.
He can’t afford a repeat performance of last week though!
Priceless Brandy can get back to winning ways in the second qualifier.
He is aided by the fact his main danger Ballinakil Clare has a horrid draw in six.
There is a feast of coursing this week with meetings in Fermoy (Wednesday and Thursday), Loughrea, Abbeydorney, Crohane and Edenderry. The Horgan Cup in Abbeydorney looks the tastiest on paper with the likes of Tory Hill Denzel, Parlor Game, At All Times, Chubbys Charmer and Black Barracuda all involved.
Black Barracuda has yet to hit top gear this season but one suggests it’s only a matter of time before he bags his first points of the season. The draw has worked out in his favour. Skellig Doll looks to be the one in the Bitch Stake here and she should come on a tonne from her outing in Kilflynn.
In Crohane & Killenaule the Slievenamon Cup takes pride of place. Kingsmill Jasper reached the third round of the trial stake here last season losing out to eventual winner Amazing King.
Jasper ended up picking up the golden ticket at the end of the season in Kilcreeven/Ballymote before going on to reach the 3rd round of both the Derby and Irish Cup. With an outing in Glin already under his belt he should be spot on this weekend. He looks to be the stand out runner for me and could renew his rivalry with Amazing King in the final.
In the bitch stake Geraldine Said is in search of her second win of the season (won in Liscannor already). I’m going against her here. Amelies Milly was beat in the final in Liscannor and she can reverse the form here at her home ground. The husband and wife team of David and Margaret Flanagan rarely leave the field empty handed!
Over in Edenderry, Not Caught Yet makes his third season debut. This Davy Reynolds trained runner lost out by the narrowest of margins in the semi-final of last season’s Irish Cup to eventual winner Foot Solution. He looks to have been drawn in the weaker half of the draw. The three big ones at the top of the card are Cuine Yet, Judiligence (defending champion) and Crafty Boogaloo.
Cuine Yet was last seen running up the T.A. Morris Stake in Clonmel and he won’t be disposed of too easy. Judiligence is as tough as old boots and loves the long stretch. The Cuine dog might just have the upper hand on him however! When it comes down to the business end though I’m going to keep the faith with Not Caught Yet. He could have very easily won the Irish Cup so deserves to get back onto the winner’s podium!
Betting for all the aforementioned stakes as well as updated betting on the Derby and Oaks are available online or in any one of our shops nationwide!
I was at Westmeath coursing on Sunday and you couldn’t but be impressed by the Derby Trial Stake winner Reikers Island handled by the one and only Gerry Holian. He won every course independently and I’d have no doubt there is lots left in the tank! #BetOnBoyle