Brian Dunleavy's two-timer a highlight on a great day of point to point racing in Conna

The teenager instigated his brace aboard Alan Ahern’s quietly-supported newcomer She’s A Saint (4/1 – 3/1) in the five and six-year-old mares’ maiden. 
Brian Dunleavy's two-timer a highlight on a great day of point to point racing in Conna

Brian Dunleavy onboard She's A Saint clears the final hurdle of the second race of the day The Maiden Race for 5 &6-Y-O Mares, sponsored by The Old Road Stud & Gain Feeds.

BRIAN DUNLEAVY is fast making a name for himself in the point-to-point ranks and the 19-year-old from Dungourney partnered his second career two-timer at Sunday’s well-attended Tallow meeting, staged under the auspices of the West Waterford Foxhounds at Shanakill Cross, Conna.

The teenager instigated his brace aboard Alan Ahern’s quietly-supported newcomer She’s A Saint (4/1 – 3/1) in the five and six-year-old mares’ maiden. 

She’s A Saint, a daughter of Saint Des Saints, was always quite well placed and she surged to the front on the inner just before the penultimate of the 13 obstacles. 

On producing a terrific jump at this second-last fence, She’s A Saint was always in command thereafter and she duly defeated newcomer Ami Des Flots by two lengths.

“I actually thought that the ground was too soft for her,“ said Dungourney-based handler Ahern of She’s A Saint, whom he bought as a foal. “She has been in a while and plenty of people were telling me to go for a bumper with her, but I’m not a bumper man. 

"She will hopefully be sold now and someone else can run her in a bumper.“ 

 James Hannon onboard MATATA clears the final hurdle to take a win in the first race of the day The Maiden Race for 4-Y-O, sponsored by Sunnyhill Stud.
James Hannon onboard MATATA clears the final hurdle to take a win in the first race of the day The Maiden Race for 4-Y-O, sponsored by Sunnyhill Stud.

Dunleavy completed his brace aboard Micheal Griffin’s pointing debutant Plan B (7/4) in the closing five-year-old and upwards adjacent hunts maiden.

Plan B, who finished third in a two and a half mile Roscommon maiden hurdle for former handler Gearoid O’Loughlin last August, made his way to the front with five fences remaining. 

The victorious six-year-old was well in command from after the second last and he then accounted for Breeze Of Wind by a comprehensive eight lengths.

“He’s a lovely horse to train and we bought him in the Goffs horses-in-training sale last October,“ said Dungourney-based handler Griffin of his wife Kay’s Plan B. 

“We will keep him pointing now and the plan is to go the track with him over the summer.“ 

 James Hannon dominated the remainder of the meeting by recording an initial career three-timer, the Tallow native signing off aboard James Motherway’s admirable veteran Na Trachtalai Abu (5/2) in the open.

Lord Schnitzel set out to make all here, but Na Trachtalai Abu had the frontrunner in his sights from before two out. 

The former five-time track winner forged past Lord Schnitzel on the flat to beat Lord Schnitzel in the colours of Brian Acheson.

“Brian [Acheson] was keen to come back pointing with him and we will run him in another open now,“ said handler Motherway of the 12-year-old Na Trachtalai Abu, a former five-time track winner that has most meritoriously amassed in excess of some €170, 000 in prizemoney earnings. 

Hannon incidentally partnered Na Trachtalai Abu on one previous occasion and was when finishing second aboard the Beneficial-sired gelding on his career debut in a Dromahane four-year-old maiden point in March 2014.

 Mia Carey Mangan and Rhea O'Sullivan watch the first race of the day The Maiden Race for 4-Y-O, sponsored by Sunnyhill Stud.
Mia Carey Mangan and Rhea O'Sullivan watch the first race of the day The Maiden Race for 4-Y-O, sponsored by Sunnyhill Stud.

Hannon got his afternoon off to the best possible start by combining with Fermoy native David Murphy, who now trains outside Thurles, to win the four-year-old maiden with newcomer Matata (2/1 – 7/4).

The Vadamos-sired Matata led until overtaken on landing over the second last by Bannow Bay Boy. 

Matata though is nothing but tough and he re-assumed command before the last to see off Bannow Bay Boy by three lengths with the pair being the only finishers from the nine runners that set out.

“He’s a horse that was broken in early. We expected him to do this and he will now to a sale,“ said handler Murphy of the Donal Commins Matata.

Hannon’s remaining success came aboard Well Dick (5/2), the rider’s very first mount for Co Wexford-based operator Mick Goff, in the five-year-old geldings’ maiden.

The towering Well Dick atoned for unseating six out on his debut at Aghabullogue last month by benefiting from frontrunning tactics by leading or disputing practically throughout en-route to defeating newcomer Flash Conroy by a length.

“He’s a big chasing type that we think a lot of. He’s a savage horse to jump and he will be sold now,“ reported handler Goff of his wife Catriona’s Well Dick.

Ian McCarthy’s newcomer Max’s Champ was a most unlucky loser in the six-year-old and upwards geldings’ maiden as the son of Champs Elysees was travelling best with an eight-length advantage when falling two out.

The Robert Clancy-trained Hitthekettle was the one to take advantage as last month’s Carrigarostig fourth then came home by some 40 lengths from Glenavaddra under Adam Feeney, who partnered his very first track winner aboard Black Bamboo in a Limerick bumper earlier in the week.

Hitthekettle was actually providing his 21-year-old handler Robert Clancy from Six-Mile-Bridge with a second training success.

Next Sunday, the action moves to Knockanard for the Avondhu Foxhounds annual fixture (12.30pm start).

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