It was Student Race Day at Limerick on Thursday which meant the Patrickswell venue was packed tight with 7,500 youthful and enthusiastic racegoers.
Limerick is very much a “horses for courses” track and local hope Internal Transfer proved the point when making it three from three at the venue.
It was an impressive start in handicap company for the 4/1 shot though his jumping, so often a strong point, was suspect this time under smart 3 lbs. claimer Donal McInerney.
The Eric McNamara trained runner could build on this, though whether we’ll see much more of him in the near future is not clear. While the going was officially good here – indeed they had to water – the Kayf Tara gelding will certainly not be risked on anything faster.
Earlier Torquay was on target for McNamara and, in contrast to her stablemate, she jumped superbly. Another difference is that the 5/1 shot actually likes good ground and indeed would probably prefer it even quicker.
She made all and Eric explained: “We wanted to be in the first two all the way and were not afraid to make the running if we had to.”
“We were hoping we had the best horse in the race and we planned to stay out of trouble as she tends to jump better when she has room. If the handicapper isn’t too harsh hopefully we can follow up with another win.”
So often the bridesmaid, Debuchet had to settle for second place again as the even money jolly was beaten by the always prominent Cosmos’s Moon who scored at 4/1 for the in form Noel Meade/Sean Flanagan combination.
Sean wasn’t keen on trying to make all but Meade insisted on those tactics and was proved right. One favourite who did oblige and was not winning out of turn was 6/4 hotpot Gipsy Lee Rose who took the opener for Joseph O’Brien and Shane Shortall.
Hard luck story of the day was The Church Gate in the beginners chase. The 7/2 chance was cruising like an assured winner under Keith Donoghue but was forced out at the second last and jockey Rachael Blackmore, who finished third on well backed market leader – 9/4 to 6/4 – Eviscerating picked up a three day ban from the Stewards.
Quick compensation surely awaits The Church Gate.
The winners keep flowing for Declan’s Irish Racing Service with Blackhillsofdakota 9/1; Torquay 8/1 (won 5/1); Imaging 4/1 (won 3/1); Min 100/30 (won 2/1); Never No More 10/3 (won 5/2); Lady Kaya 11/4; Gypsy Island 5/2 (won 2/1) and Kemboy 9/4 among his recent hits.