The final of the €1,300 to the winner Limerick A1/A2 525 was the main attraction to the Munster circuit last night and the action didn’t disappoint as Drombeg Ten produced a magnificent display to land a ninth career victory.
Owned by Evan McAuliffe, Drombeg Ten is a brilliantly consistent tracker and after tasting defeat at the semi final stage, the fawn returned to his usual top-class form, albeit at the expense of the unlucky Ardfert Josie. A winner of his opening round assignment in 28.59, Drombeg Ten boasted strong claims heading into the final but such as the class involved throughout the field, he needed to produce his very best in order to prevail. Off to a decent start from trap two, Drombeg Ten was headed only by Ardfert Josie who rocketed from trap one and it was very much game on heading into the opener. However, something went amiss with the 4/5 favourite Ardfert Josie at this point and this allowed Drombeg Ten to swoop to the front entering the back straight. Chased in second by kennel companion, Drombeg Jake, it was nip and tuck between the duo heading into the penultimate bend but the strong running Drombeg Ten was always going to prove a difficult nut to crack. Maintaining a powerful gallop around the bottom two turns, the son of Grangeview Ten and Blastoff Khalesi stayed out strongly in the closing yards to cross the line with two and a half lengths clear of Faithful Fred in second, while Drombeg Jake settled for third. The time was a slick 28.78 for the 3/1 shot and congratulations are extended to the McAuliffe’s on landing this red-hot event.
Elsewhere on last night’s Limerick card there was a nice double for the Mary and Paul Jennings kennel as both Laughil Roy and Laughil King won handsomely.
The first to pass the post in front came in an AA0 525 in race seven as Laughil Roy continued to display huge gears. Trained by Michael O’Donovan, Laughil Roy has some stunning form around several tracks and he returned to Limerick for the first time since winning on his debut back in November last year. Well away from trap four, Laughil Roy was headed by Courty Girl in the early exchanges but he took charge entering the penultimate bend to gallop clear of his rival. Setting a serious gallop thereafter, the son of Droopys Jet and Laughil Irene, a 2/1 shot, breezed clear to win by two and a half lengths from Courty Girl in second. The time was a sizzling 28.47.
Shortly after, in the very next race, Laughil King dismantled his field to come home clear in a 575-yard contest. Also trained by Michael O’Donovan, one would assume both greyhounds are gearing up for the upcoming Leger and the 4/6 shot also displayed really impressive pace to win in emphatic style. Not too fluently into stride from trap three, Laughil King was only fourth early doors but he proved a class above his rivals from halfway as he took control and proceeded to draw clear thereafter. A real professional performance from this son of Laughil Blake and Droopys Zero, he came home seven and a half lengths clear of Ballymartin Rory, in a smashing time of 31.37.
There was also a double on the cards for the kennel of John Byrne as both Outdoor Eagle and Meduza scored in eye-catching style.
Outdoor Eagle kick-started the double for John Byrne in race six as he produced an outstanding display for Michael Hennessy in what was just his second career start. After qualifying in with a brilliant 28.82 trial, the February 21’ son of Magical Bale and Outdoor Roller broke best of all from trap five and in doing so, his rivals were always going to find it tough to get back on terms. Setting a fierce gallop down the back, Outdoor Eagle had certainly flown and although challenged by Salma Alma late on, he crossed the line with one and a half lengths in hand. The time was a swift 28.81.
The double was completed in one of the top races of the night as Meduza bounced back from defeat last time out in race ten, the AAO 550. Another top class lady on her day, Meduza went to traps a 2/1 shot against a very smart field but she was forced to settle for third early on as Faithful Paddy led the way from Annagh Bailey in second. A thrilling contest was to ensue thereafter but it was Meduza who showed real guts and determination to get the better of the aforementioned Faithful Paddy and Annagh Bailey, by a neck, on the line. The time was 29.91.