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Report | Turtulla 10th March 2019

Barry O'Neill had a successful day in Turtulla on Sunday, recording a double on the card.

The Co. Wexford rider secured his first success in the Hotel Minella five-year-old and upwards geldings' maiden aboard Sonru.

The Donnchadh Doyle-trained son of Jeremy defeated the Gerard Lawless-trained Ballydonagh Boy by a distance of 25 lengths on what was just his second start to date, having completed in third on his debut at Tinahely when in the hands of Rob James.

Winning owner Michael Murphy was on hand to lead in Sonru and celebrated the success in the winner's enclosure.

Winning trainer Donnchadh Doyle said; "I am delighted for this lad’s owner Michael Murphy as he is a long-standing family friend so it was nice to get a winner for him.  This fellow stepped up well from his previous outing when third at Tinahely and he did it very well here." 

O'Neill brought up his double on the day aboard Cool Dove in the Barne Accessories, Tracta Motors, Casey Tiles and Dalton Transport mares' winner of one.

Running in the colours of her owner and breeder Maurice Mariga, the daughter of Flemensfirth ran out a convincing 12-length winner over the Andy Slattery-trained Dont Say A Thing.

The winner, who is handled by Colin Bowe, had got off the mark at the first time of asking at Cragmore in February and bounced back from her third at Knockanard more recently.

The mare is the second foal out of the two-time winner Lonesome Dove who was trained by Charlie Swan.

Winning handler Colin Bowe said: "She is a very good mare and we will keep her pointing for the remainder of the season as long as the ground remains safe."

Andy Slattery was once again forced to settle for the runners-up spot at what is his local fixture when his Fired Earth failed to get the better of Maifitz’s Madonna in the Premier Harriers Committee five-year-old and upwards mares' maiden for novice riders.

Trained by Gerry Kelleher, the wining mare ran out a six-length winner in the hands of the in-form novice rider Michael O'Sullivan.

Owned by Larry Buckley and Jackie Beirne, the winner is an ex-track performer that was previously trained by Joseph O'Brien and was appearing for the fifth time between the flags since returning from the track.

Winning handler Gerard Kelleher said: "I am delighted for the owners Jackie (Bernie) and Larry (Buckley) from Macroom who own Mai Fitzs Bar & Restaurant.  The mare performed well today, she is an ex-Joseph O’Brien horse and will probably go for the Gain Mares Final at Ballynoe now."

Success in the Shanaville Stables, Tattersalls Ireland and JB Stuctures Ltd four-year-old mares maiden went to handler-owner Sam Curling with River Tyne.

The daughter of Geordieland recorded a one-and-a-half-length debut victory under the guidance of Pa King to defeat the Donnchadh Doyle-trained Lady Tremaine in a finish which was fought out by a pair of newcomers.
The winning-handler Sam Curling said: “We bought her as a foal at Doncaster and have always thought a lot of her. She is owned by the lads in the yard so it was great.”

Denis Murphy claimed the Meadowview Stables four-year-old geldings' maiden with Hold That Taught in what was an impressive debut success.

Partnered by Simon Cavanagh, the Kayf Tara gelding ran out a ten-length winner, after defeating Colin Bowe's Battle of Actium by an eye-catching ten lengths.

The winning gelding was a €70,000 Derby sale graduate, whilst the Barry O’Neill-ridden runner-up, was an equally pricey purchase as a €65,000 sales graduate.

The winning rider Simon Cavanagh said: "He is a very nice horse and he has been doing everything right at home. Denis (Murphy) wanted to come here as it’s a nice galloping track.  He was idling in the straight but he just kept finding more, I think he is a very good horse."

Tipperary handler Shane Hassett recorded his second success of the weekend in the David Harry Kelly Horse Trainer five-year-old and upwards confined maiden with Kiosk Keith.

The rookie handler had enjoyed his first success 24 hours earlier.

The winning son of Scorpion denied Tom Keating's Who's In The Box by a distance of one-and-a-half-lengths, in the colours of Hassett's partner Jane Davies, and was ridden to success by John Barry.

"We have had a great weekend, all of the horses have been sick throughout the season and they are just coming back in to form now. This fellow has shown plenty of improvement and I am delighted for John O’Leary who owns a half share in him as it is his first winner," said winning handler Shane Hassett of the €17,000 Land Rover sale purchase.

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