Ian Fortune

For the second week running, there was a real display of power in the semi-finals of the Friends of Newbridge Derby with both Leeloo and Coonough Barry coming home hard to earn their place in next weekend’s decider on the back of a victory.


Leeloo was favourite for the opening heat but her many backers would have swapped their bets at most points through the contest. Here Southfield Duke set a strong gallop, leading from the second turn. In contrast, Leeloo was fifth around the opening two bends before moving third into the back straight, albeit four lengths behind the leader.

Passing halfway, Southfield Duke was a couple of lengths clear of Lodgefield Mags with Leeloo another two and a half lengths adrift. Around the bottom two corners, Leeloo started to close the gap to go second as they turned for home.

Nuala Lynch’s daughter of Droopys Sydney and Mydras Dawn still had work to do but she produced a wonderful finishing kick to swoop in the closing yards. Such was the display of power, she went on to win by two lengths from Southfield Duke in 30.02, in turn making it three wins from three starts in the competition. Lodgefield Mag was another length away in third.


Coonough Barry went fractionally faster in the second heat, getting loose down the back straight to pick up the early pace-setter Southfield King around the last two bends. The Barry Clancy trained son of Grangeview Ten and Coonough Dolly had to ride a bump on the turn but was always too close once slipping around in second.

Owned jointly by Graham Ashe and Shaun Gresham, Coonough Barry joined and headed the leader on the final turn before going on to contain the big finish of Victory Lane by a length in 30.00. Southfield King was just a length and a half further back in third.

Friends of Newbridge Derby

Final draw

1 Lodgefild Mag

2 Southfield King

3 Southfield Duke

4 Coonough Paddy (m)

5 Victory Lane (m)

6 Leeloo (w