Back-to-form Plinth delivers at Kilbeggan

Monday, Jun 17 2019

Plinth’s victory in the Carmel Fay Memorial Novice Chase was the highlight of a 120-1 Kilbeggan double for Niall Madden, Joseph O’Brien and JP McManus.

Last successful in the Grade Three Grimes Hurdle at Tipperary in 2017, the nine-year-old gelding had been out of form of late.

But sent off at 10-1 on Monday, the son of Montjeu was settled in second behind 2-5 favourite Ravenhill before taking up the running after two out en route to a comfortable six-length success.

Frank Berry, racing manager for owner McManus, said: “He is a great old horse, jumped great tonight and loved the ground.

“He struggles in the handicaps, and he’ll tip away at these small tracks. Maybe he’ll end up at Galway – but at a level.

“Carmel (Fay) was my sister and died six years ago, so it was lovely to win this race. We won it two years ago as well, and the ‘boss man’ will be delighted.”

Jockey, trainer and owner had already struck with Miami Beach (10-1) in the opening Book Online At Maiden Hurdle.

Bought for a massive 350,000 guineas as a yearling, the son of Invincible Spirit failed to make an impact on his first three outings – including when finishing seventh to Paddy Buns here at his most recent attempt.

But fitted with a tongue-strap for the first time, he came with his effort before the last and soon got to the front – drawing clear to prevail by five and a half lengths.

The most valuable contest on the card was the Galway Races Galway Plate Trial Handicap Chase, in which Conrad Hastings (7-1) defied top-weight.

Off the track since September, the Henry de Bromhead-trained gelding made good progress into the straight under Rachael Blackmore and then kept on well on the long run-in – with the final fence omitted because of the low sun – to score by four and a half lengths.

“He is a high class horse, and it is good he is back to his old form,” said Blackmore.

“He jumped really well, and it was my first time riding him. He has been off a little while, so it was a good training performance to get him to do that on his first run back.”

Blackmore had to settle for second aboard Avenir D’Une Vie behind Ming Dynasty in the Midlands National Ladies Day July 19th Handicap Hurdle.

Out of form since winning at Naas in February, Gavin Cromwell’s seven-year-old was sent off at 20-1 but got to the front inside the final 150 yards to land the spoils by a length and a half – with the assistance of Jonathan Moore.

Doctor Duffy completed a hat-trick in the Add Kilbegganraces On Snapchat Novice Hurdle, having won on his jumps debut at Killarney last month and a bumper at Cork back in October.

The 11-10 favourite, up in trip to three miles one furlong, had a good tussle with Jerandme before scoring by a length under Philip Enright.

Winning trainer Charles Byrnes said: “It was a messy race, and we think he is a fair horse.

“His bumper form is quite good. I think two miles four is his trip, and in that race they hacked for half of it.”

The Andrew McNamara-trained Classic Concorde (10-1) ran out an easy winner of the Greville Arms Hotel Mullingar Handicap Hurdle, while John Halley’s Ballymacaw (7-2) made virtually all to take the concluding Summer Party Pack Discount Group Booking INH Flat Race.

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