COLIN Keane has really hit the ground running this year and the reigning Champion Jockey brought his seasonal tally to 15 by partnering a double at Cork’s flat fixture today.
The Meath native initiated his brace aboard the Dermot Weld-trained Kailash in the second division of the Irish Stallion Farms EBF Median Auction Maiden at Cork’s flat fixture yesterday.
The blinkered Kailash, who came into this extended one and a quarter-mile race with a lofty 87 rating, had to be bustled along on the inner shortly after leaving the stalls. However, the winner soon got into a lovely rhythm in second spot behind the leader Star Official.
The eventual winner took up the running two and a half furlongs out and, whilst soon coming under pressure, he gamely asserted in the closing stages to see off Star Official by one and three quarter lengths in the familiar silks of his breeder HH Aga Khan.
Weld’s son Kris reported: ”Kailash is a grand horse that always runs an honest race and he might get a little further in time.“
Keane signed off aboard the Kevin Smith-trained International Lady in the closing Mallow Handicap for three-year-olds. The 51-rated International Lady took command from over a furlong out to dismiss Abogados by two and a half lengths.
The Blackwater Race, an extended 10-furlong contest for three-year-olds that hadn’t won a group or listed race, was won in game style by the Aidan O’Brien-trained Kyprios. The Moyglare Stud Farm-owned/bred Kyprios, a debut winner at Galway last September, made his way to the front a furlong out and he then stayed on stoutly with Seamie Heffernan to deny O’Reilly, who came off a straight line inside the final furlong, by a half-length.
Heffernan remarked of the Galileo-sired Kyprios: ”He did well to win at two and he is not too slow. He is right there up, or just behind, the best of them [Ballydoyle three-year-olds]."
Joseph O’Brien, son of the aforementioned Aidan, kept his supporters happy by sending out Camdeboo to spring a 22/1 surprise on her return to the fray in the Follow Us On Instagram 3-Y-O Fillies’ Maiden. The previously once-raced Camdeboo, a £72,000 yearling acquisition, took command from over a furlong out with Declan McDonogh to dismiss favourite Blazing Star by three and a half lengths in the style of a filly that we will be hearing a lot more about.
Bolger completed his brace with Vocito in the GAIN The Advantage Series Handicap. The recent Leopardstown runner-up Vocito, who was fitted with cheekpieces, picked up the running for his trainer’s son-in-law Kevin Manning over a furlong out to beat Helvic Princess by three lengths.
“He was a little bit unlucky the last day,“ reported Bolger’s travelling head lad Ger Flynn of Vocito. “He had a wide draw here and he’s versatile regards the ground.“
Bolger opened his account with the filly Ivy Avenue, a dual winner over a mile last autumn, in the CorkRacecourse.ie Apprentice Handicap. It was Luke McAteer that was entrusted with the mount aboard Ivy Avenue, owned by Patricia O’Rourke, who is married to former Meath GAA football legend Colm O’Rourke, and she picked up the running over a furlong out to dismiss Na Caith Taboc by a half-length.
Ivy Avenue is clearly adaptable as regards ground as she won on heavy ground last autumn.
The Jessica Harrington-trained Bopedro put some previously uninspiring efforts behind him by making a triumphant return in the Follow Us On Twitter Handicap. The 89-rated Bopedro, absent since October of last year, gamely responded to Shane Foley’s urgings by leading inside the final 50 yards to dismiss Fastnet Crown by a half-length.
Johnny Murtagh’s Ottoman Emperor stepped up from his sixth-placed debut effort behind the progressive Sir Lamorak at Dundalk last month by winning the first division of the Irish Stallion Farms EBF Median Auction Maiden. Ottoman Emperor was always quite close to the pace and the winning son of Excelebration readily picked up the running a furlong out with his hander’s stable jockey Ben Coen to account for Max Mayhem by three parts of a length.
Winning jockey Coen said: "He is still plenty green and he came on a lot from Dundalk. He loves good ground, he did it well there and he’ll probably improve again.“