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Report | Loughrea 13th October 2019

Edwulf was unsurprisingly the star attraction at Loughrea as he drew a strong crowd to the Co. Galway course, and those in attendance witnessed his first success since landing the 2018 Irish Gold Cup at Leopardstown when he won the Renvyle Hotel & Spa and MacDermot & Allen Solicitors open.

Titled the ‘miracle horse’ after winning the Leopardstown feature less than a year after collapsing in the latter stages of the National Hunt Chase at the 2017 Cheltenham Festival, the now ten-year-old, who was making his first appearance since finishing second in a Dromahane maiden in 2014, easily accounted for Foxtail Hill by six lengths on his debut for the Enda Bolger yard.

The Limerick handler was on duty at his local course to saddle Munster National fifth Movewiththetimes, but winning rider Aine O’Connor said: “That was a lovely start back. He’s a star of a horse who was always in control today.”

It proved to be a day to remember for the connections of Captain Jimmy, as the success of the six-year-old in the INHS Committee older geldings’ maiden for novice riders provided both handler Tony Kelly and 17-year-old rider James Duggan, with their respective first career successes.

The son of Gold Well was only making his debut at the age of six, however he was not phased by the test of taking on more experienced horses, when he returned eight lengths clear of Mustmeetforapint, who was the only other finisher.

“I’m really grateful to Declan (Cunningam, owner) as he’s been a massive supporter of me since I started training a few. I’m very thankful to him for the opportunity. James (Duggan) knows him well and gave him a lovely ride,” said the winning handler.

Last season’s impressive Lingstown victor Bravemansgame received a notable form boost when For Talks Sake, the horse he easily dismissed by eight lengths, himself recorded an eight-length success, when winning the Goffs UK Autumn Sale four-year-old maiden.

One of two runners in the race with previous placed form, the Coastal Path gelding proved his superiority over the Punchestown third Ocean Drifter in the home straight, as the €35,000 Derby Sale purchase got his head in front at the second time of asking under his owner Rob James.

“This fella had some very good form from last year so we were confident coming here today. He was good and strong there at the finish and will go to one of the sales now,” said Bowe.

That was the first of Rob James’ two visits to the winner’s enclosure across the afternoon, as he later teamed up with My Story to provide Wexford handler Sean Doyle with his initial victor of the season in the Galway Blazers winner-of-one contest.

A Dromahane winner as a four-year-old when with Doyle’s younger brother Donnchadh, the seven-year-old returned from an unsuccessful spell under rules with Neil Mulholland and Tom George, by defeating the previous course winner Rockin Roxtown by 20 lengths.The son of Court Cave is now likely to head back inside the rails following this confidence boosting success.

Jamie Codd and Denis Murphy continued their strong start to the season when they combined with Midnight Legacy to win the Dartfield mares’ maiden.

A €22,000 purchase from the 2017 Land Rover Sale, the Getaway mare is well related being from the family of Master Of The Hall and Pairofbrowneyes, and the newcomer got the better of the stable debutant Lady Violet by four lengths.

“She’s a very big mare who’ll improve plenty. Jamie (Codd) was thrilled with her and felt that there was plenty left in the locker there at the end. She’ll head on to one of the sales now,” said Murphy.

Former track performer Elusive Star prevailed in a three-way thriller to the Pier Head Bar & Restaurant, with the first three horses only separated by a length at the line.

Fourth in a Punchestown maiden hurdle last February, the Elusive Pimpernel gelding dug deep on the run-in to provide John Barry and Michael Hourigan with their first successes of the season, when he repelled Get Real by half a length.

“He’s a horse I hold in the highest regard, he does things very easily and it’s a while since I had one like him,” said Hourigan of a horse now set for a return to the track.
 

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