There were four Irish trained winners at Towcester on Saturday night as the second round of the Star Sports/ TRC English Derby drew to a conclusion.
Kildare continued his rapid rise to superstardom by posting the fastest time of the night but things could have gone much better for the Irish as a number of our team were eliminated.
SALLY SETS THE TONE
The brilliant Singalong Sally got proceedings of to a perfect start for the Emerald Isle.
The 5-4 favourite to win Heat 9, the Pat Buckley trained star broke smartly and just cleared Liam Dowling’s Ballymac Fairone into the turn.
Once doing so she was always going to take some stopping. Staying on well, she contained the persistent challenge of Ballymac Fairone to win by a half length in 29.33. Peter Cronin’s Emily Jet was run out of the frame in the closing stages by Savana Beau before finishing fourth.
WEXFORD LEADS HOME A HENNESSY ONE-TWO
Ireland’s second win came in Heat 13 where all five runners were members of the raiding party.
Jaytee Wexford may have been available at double figure odds but the Paul Hennessy trained star produced a near career best effort to dominate.
Making a fast start in the red jacket, the son of Romeo Recruit made every inch. His kennel companion Barefoot Supremo did push him hard in the closing yards but Jaytee Wexford held on by a half length in a fast 29.18. Bockos Vieira was the third Irish trained qualifier a further five lengths adrift. After bad crowding both Le Bonite and Wide Open finished out of the frame.
MAGICO FROM ROMEO
Thankfully, Ireland ended the night on a high, taking both Heats 15 and 16.
Romeo Magico made the most of a rails pitch in Heat 15, leading before the corner and avoiding traffic that was to cost Coolavanny Calvn a place in the next round.
Romeo Magico stretched into a clear advantage down the far side and while he did tire on the run in, he comfortably held the advancing track record holder Lautaro by four lengths in 29.29. Coolavanny Calvn eventually finished fifth.
KILDARE WITH A STATEMENT PERFORMANCE
Kildare was the star of proceedings in the final heat of the round.
Although not the fastest into stride, the Peter Cronin trained star flew up the fence to lead on the bend from the fast-starting Blackrose Tadhg.
Once going to the front, he quickly put his rivals to the sword. Moving over five lengths clear by halfway, he did come back to the chasing pack on the run in but still held off the advancing defending champion Thorn Falcon by two and three quarter lengths in 29.11. Scarty Yank missed the start and was always struggling to get back involved. He eventually crashed out in fourth.
JET PROGRESSES IN SECOND
After sending out a one-two in Heat 13, Paul Hennessy saw his third runner Priceless Jet qualify in second in Heat 14.
The former Corn Cuchulainn winner looked destined to win when taking over from Coppice Fox at halfway but the later rallied on the run in to beat Priceless Jet by a half length in 29.30. Liam Dowling’s Hoodoo Brown carried no luck in this contest, finding bad early traffic before finishing at speed in fifth.
ONLY DREAM GET THROUGH
Ireland seemed to have a very strong hand in Heat 10 where four of the six runners represented these shores but only Bobsleigh Dream managed to progress behind trap to line winner Romeo On Tilt. Bobsleigh Dream didn’t make the fastest of starts but was soon second and she gave chase throughout, eventually finishing four and a half lengths behind the 29.22 winner. Sadly, the Irish trio of Knight Tornado, Part Blake and Glengar Jenny all made their exit.
CLOUD SECOND BUT BARRY AND LEAH OUT OF LUCK
Bockos Leah and Skywalker Barry both fluffed their lines in Heat 12.
Instead, Mickeys Barrett stayed on strongly to head the Peter Cronin trained Cape Cloud in the closing yards. The latter had set a strong gallop but was picked up late, losing by a head in 29.79.
Bockos Leah and Skywalker Barry both found traffic and were to finish fourth and fifth in the five-dog contest.