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Report | Mainstown 01st December 2019

The popularity of the Tattersalls Ireland four-year-old maiden at Mainstown resulted in a three-way divide, providing the successful partnership of Mick Goff and Shane Fitzgerald with a double when landing two out of the three divisions.

Their first success came courtesy of He’s A Hardy Bloke, who got off the mark at the third time of asking when recording a four-length victory over Erne River in the second division of the four-year-old maiden.

“We hold him in high regard, and thank god today he showed us what he can do. He just won it as you wanted, what we thought he would have done the first day,” said Goff.

Arguably their most impressive success came in the second division of the four-year-old maiden when they introduced newcomer, Sir Sholokov, who battled gamely all the way to the line to beat Here We Have it by a head.

Winning handler Goff said: “That’s as gutsy a performance as you’ll ever see is what he just did there. I own him myself and Caitriona bought him off Martin Cullinane in Doncaster, he could be a lovely horse in time. He is for sale now.”

Barry O’Neill and Colin Bowe continued their winning streak when they combined with Across The Channel to take the first division of the four-year-old maiden.

The son of Dunkerque, was a penultimate fence casualty on his debut performance, but gained redemption here when getting the better of Junior Rattler by a neck.

“He had a lovely run in Lisronagh. The horse that was second had form in Tinahely. Barry (O’Neill) said the two of them really quickened going to the last. He’s a nice horse, he’ll probably go to the sales,” said Bowe.

Runner-up on his previous start at Kirkistown last week, the Mighty Stowaway returned to winning ways in the hands of Aine O’Connor in the ITM & Belmont Equine ladies open.

The ex-track performer put in an impressive round of jumping as he won by one and a half lengths over Reigning Supreme.

Winning handler Shark O’Hanlon said: “The plan was to get him qualified for the Foxhunters in Cheltenham and we have it done now. We might go to Down Royal at Christmas.”

It proved a worthwhile trip south of the border for Northern handler Colin McKeever as Muckamore recorded an eye-catching eight-length victory in the Goffs five-year-old geldings’ maiden.

The son of Sholokov, who has been absent since finishing runner-up on his debut performance at Loughanmore last November, got the better of Time Leader and will now head to the sales.

“He had the form on paper, he was a good second at Loughanmore in a good maiden this time last year. He had a little problem which we had to get rectified,” said McKeever.

The ITBA & Whytemount Stud five-year-old mares’ maiden went to Sofias Castle under the guidance of Wexford rider Harley Dunne.

The daughter of Arctic Cosmos, who had made her debut 12 month ago at Boulta, rewarded the perseverance of her connections, when up her best performance to date, to defeat Scorpian Lady for Cork handler Jason O’Reilly.

“I might go for a winner race with her next. The owner John White has been very good to me, I trained a few winners for him as well before, a half-sister to this one Castle White,” said O’Reilly.

Mr Mantilla took the Local Trainers, Powers Pub & Bobby Fitzgerald winner-of-one recording back-to-back successes for handler Vincent Devereux in the hands of Shane O’Rourke when coming home one and a half lengths in front of Turtulla winner Templebredin.

“We went to Cheltenham and we couldn’t sell him, so we had to come back and go for the winners. I don’t know what the plan is now, see what happens. If we can’t sell him, we’ll keep him,” said Devereux.

Cork raiders James Dullea and James O’Reilly teamed up on the day to take the Hotel Minella six-year-old and upwards geldings maiden for novice riders when Itscatrionaschoice scored by a head.

Running in the colours of winning owner Catriona O’Donovan, the Elusive Pimpernal gelding fended off the persistent effort from runner-up Kildrum, on what was his debut performance between the flags, following a spell under rules.

Winning handler Dullea said: “We always thought he was a nice horse, hopefully he’ll improve plenty from it and will go back to the track at Christmas.”

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