Irish review – Thurles 27/01/11 and Gowran Park 28/01/11

Thurles 27/01/11

Follow The Plan sprang a 25-1 shock in The Matty Ryan Memorial Kinloch Brae Chase. Ridden by Paddy Mangan the duo collared Roberto Goldback in the final strides to win by a neck. Trainer Oliver Mckiernan stated after the race that he didn’t think the horse was forward enough in his work to win and that he had considered the ground to be not in his favour. The final fence was omitted as on course medical teams were attending Davy Russell after his fall from Mossbank. Third placed J’y Vole who was third to Albertas Run in last year’s Ryanair Chase at the Festival is reportedly on course for the same race this year.

Gowran Park 28/01/11

It was a case of third time lucky as Gowran Park finally got to stage the Thyestes meeting, after losing the original day last Thursday and the first rescheduled day last Saturday.

Irelands leading hope for The World Hurdle Mourad, was a stylish winner of the Three Mile Grade 2 Galmoy Hurdle. The 4-9 favourite went into an easy lead between the second last & the last and came home six lengths clear of 25/1 shot Moskova  who was being asked some serious questions five out then stayed on to take a clear second at the last.

Mourad now heads straight to Cheltenham and has been clipped into 10/1 from 12’s for The World Hurdle. Bred by HRH The Aga Khan and a Son of Derby winner Sinndar; Mourad looks the likely one to give Big Bucks a race. He boasts a Grade Three win at Fairyhouse last Easter, a third to Quevega in what was THE race of last year’s Punchestown Festival and a win in the Christmas Hurdle at Leopardstown in December.  He also has the all important “Festival factor”. Previous Cheltenham Festival form tends to repeat itself; Mourad was third to Zaynar in the 2009 Triumph Hurdle.
Siegemaster provided Dessie Hughes with his first Thyestes Chase in his career as both Jockey and Trainer. Carrying top weight Siegemaster also gave jockey Davy Russell a welcome winner after being kicked in the back in his fall from Mossbank at Thurles on Thursday. Siegemaster is apparently heading to Fairyhouse for The Irish National on 25 April. The Midnight Club finished ¾ of a length in second and is Aintree bound for The Grand National (25’s from 33’s). Long time leader and Favourite Alpha Ridge had helped set a blistering pace but got tired approaching two and eventually finished fourth. 

Cathryn Fry