The Jessica Harrington-trained Hell Bent made all the running to win the €45,000 Cork Derby Premier Handicap contest for Shane Foley

The next Cork meeting takes place on the evening of Friday July 8th.
The Jessica Harrington-trained Hell Bent made all the running to win the €45,000 Cork Derby Premier Handicap contest for Shane Foley

FUNCHAL and Billy Lee win for trainer Willie McCreery.

THE Paddy Twomey-trained Rosscarbery continued her upward trajectory at Wednesday night’s flat fixture at Cork by winning the featured Group 3 Munster Oaks Stakes over a mile and a half to complete a double for jockey Billy Lee. 

The four-year-old Rosscarbery, owned by Fort Lauderdale-based Robert Moran who has a holiday home outside the aforementioned west Cork town, won her fourth consecutive race of the year by arriving from mid-division to edge into a narrow advantage inside the final furlong. Rosscarbery then maintained a slender lead to beat Yaxeni by a neck with Lily Pond securing the minor honours, a further two lengths adrift.

“She is tough and looks to have improved again from winning in Roscommon last time,“ said Twomey of Rosscarbery. 

“I thought that she was good enough to run well here and she is in all of the early closing races here in Ireland. I think that a right-handed track is preferable for her and she could go up in trip.“ 

Ballingarry, County Limerick native Lee initiated his brace by combining with long-standing supporter Willie McCreery to capture the Mallow Maiden for three-year-olds’ and upwards aboard the quietly-supported newcomer Funchal (12/1 – 8/1). 

BADB and Gavin Ryan won for trainer Donnacha O'Brien.
BADB and Gavin Ryan won for trainer Donnacha O'Brien.

A daughter of Bungle Inthejungle, Funchal arrived from well off the pace to pick up the running on the inner some 100 yards out and she then bounded clear to dismiss French import De Velara by one and a quarter lengths in the style of a filly that should be well up to winning again.

“She did everything lovely and Billy [Lee] was very patient on her," commented McCreery of the Mrs Anne Marie Burns-owned Funchal. 

"She’s a filly that I’ve liked and she’s always shown signs of being a racehorse. 

"The owners will be retaining her and the plan is to get some black-type with her.“ 

The man supporting event was the Cork Derby Premier Handicap and the Jessica Harrington-trained Hell Bent made all the running to win this €45,000 contest for Shane Foley. 

The blinkered Hell Bent was clearly possessing all the aces approaching the final furlong and he duly defeated favourite Safecracker by two lengths.

“He’s a horse that stays all day and he loves getting a lead,“ said Mrs Harrington’s daughter Kate of Hell Bent. 

“He’s a beautiful big horse that could be a dual-purpose horse and he’s in the Newmarket sales next month.“ 

The Ger Lyons-trained three-year-old filly Geometric held on grimly with Colin Keane to win the Midsummer Sprint Stakes. 

The odds-on favourite Geometric made her way to the front after one and a half furlongs and she was strongly pressed by her stable-companion Pirate Jenny and Chocquinto inside the final furlong. 

Geometric however refused to yield and ultimately fought off the renewed effort of Pirate Jenny by a short head.

SCREEN SIREN and Mikey Sheehy win for trainer Sarah Lynam from COLLECTIVE POWER and MAGGIE THUNDER.
SCREEN SIREN and Mikey Sheehy win for trainer Sarah Lynam from COLLECTIVE POWER and MAGGIE THUNDER.

Lyons’ brother Shane remarked: ”Geocentric will now go for the Sapphire Stakes. 

"She would prefer slower ground and she will be kept in training next year.“ 

The Donnacha O’Brien-trained Babd brought the best form to the table in the Irish Stallion Farms EBF 2-Y-O Fillies’ Maiden considering that she was only beaten a length into third spot by Open Market at this same venue last month. 

Badb stepped forwards by leading over a furlong out for Gavin Ryan and the daughter of Footstepsinthesand then stormed clear to eclipse Silmaniya by three and a half lengths.

“She was working like a good filly all along and improved for a bit of nice ground today. 

"She will stick to five furlongs and will be left in the Albany at Royal Ascot next week, but she is more likely to go for the Airlie Beach Stakes at The Curragh on Derby weekend “ said the winning handle of Badb, owned and bred by his mother Mrs Ann Marie O’Brien.

Sarah Lynam’s Screen Siren vindicated the promise of her most recent sixth-placed effort at Naas by landing the Sign Up To Our Newsletter Handicap in the hands of Mikey Sheehy. 

In a race that saw less than a length cover the first four home, Screen Siren picked up the running some 100 yards out to beat Collective Power by half length and the runner-up is incidentally trained by Ms Lynam’s father Eddie.

“I was hoping for a bit of rain and Screen Siren really enjoys this place. She showed a great will to win,“ said Ms Lynam, who interestingly alluded to Cork as the best sprint track in the country.

Sondheim provided Co Kildare-based Craig O’Neill with his initial success as a handler by leading in the closing stages with 10 lbs claimer Neve Bennett to deny No Patience by a short head in the closing Hot House Flowers Play July 8th Handicap.

The next Cork meeting takes place on the evening of Friday July 8th.

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