Ian Fortune

The opening round of the RPGTV Irish Cesarewitch provided real entertainment on Sunday afternoon with a predictable mix of superb displays and shock results.

Pat Guilfoyle has captured the midlands classic on four separate occasions and in the form of Magical Mary he has outstanding claims of making it win number five. She emerged a very impressive winner of the final heat, posting a quickest of the round 33.17.

A 4-7 ahead of the off, Pat and Alice Guilfoyle’s daughter of Droopys Jet and Mystical Moll soon set about justifying her position in the betting. The March ’20 whelp broke smartly and soon quickened into a clear advantage.

Canada Goose turned second but couldn’t land a paw on the leader. Displaying fine pace and power, Magical Mary drew right away to eventually cross the line five lengths to the good. Canada Goose ran a fine race to finish as close, while Bective Cherry and Glendalough finished a long way back in the remaining qualifying positions. 


Toolmaker Beach didn’t look a likely winner for much of the opening half of Heat 4 but it was a very different matter as they neared the third turn.

Only fourth to halfway, a long way behind the pace-setting Crafty Bonanza, he suddenly started to move through the gears. 

Flying up the fence, the Robert Gleeson trained son of Droopys Jet and Kilara Lizzie shot up the inside of the Crafty Bonanza on the third turn. Despite the pair bumping, Toolmaker Beach moved on before powering up the straight to emerge a very impressive four and a half length scorer over Crafty Bonanza in 33.42. Bective Hope and Sallagh Fred were just a couple of short heads away in third and fourth.


Old Treasure found herself clear of her rivals after avoiding opening bend traffic in the first of the six heats.

Reggie Roberts’ strong running lady was left clear when Generous Angel ran off the corner, causing traffic problems for most of the field.

It meant Old Treasure was left to her own devices out front and the daughter of Laughil Blake and Idle Gossip duly coasted home twelve lengths to the good over Lisnakill Vernon in 33.55. Bawn Farloe was third a further two and a half lengths adrift, while Young Bud qualified in fourth.


Dark Ava arrived fast to lad late in the second heat.

Here Pierno and Beaming Scarlet battled for the lead for much of the way but Dark Ava was allowed to stalk the pair before launching a decisive late challenge.

Pierno flew into the turn but eased slightly, leaving Beaming Scarlet to take over. Pierno was again in front by the third turn but he again checked his stride. Beaming Scarlet was back in front on the final bend but Dark Ava was now poised to challenge.

Switching to the inside, Mark Robinson’s daughter of Ballyanne Sim and Katies Decision flew up the straight to score by a length and a half in 33.60. Pierno was second with Beaming Scarlet another length away in third. Hellofaracket was the fourth qualifier.


Juvenile Derby and National Puppy Stake semi-finalist, Gaston Pecas was having his first start of the year in Heat 4 but it was scarcely evident as he lowered the colours of odds-on favourite Magical Poppy.

Javier Jarne’s son of Droopys Sydney and Bobsleigh Jet went up fast to lead into the turn and he was never under any real pressure thereafter.

Despite coming back to his rivals in the closing yards, the Pat Buckley trained Gaston Pecas went on to score by two and a half lengths from the hot favourite Magical Poppy in 33.74. There was a further three length gap to Clonfert Lorenzo in third with Roxholme Kristof jut a short head behind in fourth.


The Vincent McKenna trained Ballygraigue Jim made the most of an ideal draw on the fence in Heat 3, leading early to contain the challenge of Fahy Grace in the closing stages.

While a number of his rivals were jostling for position into the corner, Ballygraigue Jim was going up straight and he always had matters in hand.

Owned by Thomas and Charlie Bourke, the son of Silverhill Shay and Newlawn Minnie stayed on strongly to see off Fahy Grace by three lengths in 33.90. Ballyard Taylor, who was the 6-4 favourite, was another six lengths away in third with Korando the other qualifier.

The full draw and form for the second round can be found here: