Both Lynchy Boy and Delirium Tremens posted 29.14 to set the standard in the second round of the McCalmont Cup at Kilkenny on Friday evening.
One Time Only was just two spots slower, highlighting how open the competition is, while Crokers Spirit won the remaining heat, overcoming traffic to do so.
ONE TIME VICTORIOUS
Former Laurels and Champion Stakes winner One Time Only was the even money favourite ahead of the opening heat and a slick exit saw the Tommy O’Donovan trained star dispute the pace into the opening turn alongside Burgess Bolger.
The latter had actually gone fastest in the opening round and was to push One Time Only hard throughout.
With the inside line in his favour, One Time Only moved on at the corner to hit halfway a length and a half to the good. Burgess Bolger was far from finished with, however. Staying on well up the run in, he drew closer but One Time Only dug in to score by a neck in 29.16. Gortkelly Nestor was third.
A SPIRITED RUN BY CROKERS
Crokers Spirit performed remarkably well to win the second heat.
John Croker’s son of Scolari Me Daddy disputed the pace into the turn with Priceless King but the pair became entangled at the turn, allowing Freedom Odin to move to the front.
Priceless King turned second with Crokers Spirit back in third but he soon began to move forward. Moving second down the back straight, Crokers Spirit shot past Freedom Odin on the third turn. From there he edged on to win by two lengths in 29.40. Freedom Odin was second, nine lengths clear of Ruffian Angel.
LYNCHY TOO STRONG
Lynchy Boy took a couple of bumps in the early yards in Heat 3 but managed to turn second to the fast starting Ballintee Noshow.
Once doing so, he was always close enough to make a decisive challenge. Staying tight to the fence, he slipped throughout around the last two bends before powering home to win by four and a half lengths in 29.14. Urban View came through for second with Black Summer just a short head away in third.
TREMENS MATCHES BOY
Delirium Tremens matched that run in the final heat, leading early and again at the second turn.
He was briefly headed around the opening turns but carried his momentum onto the second bend to go back to the front.
Rowlers Road was his nearest pursuer throughout but he could never gat back on terms. Delirium Tremens ran out a comfortable three lengths scorer in 29.14. Ballybough Bela was the third qualifier, some two lengths behind Rowlers Road.