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Report | Carrigarostig 19th January 2020

The Killeagh Harriers unveiled their impressive new track at Carrigarostig on Sunday and Derek O’Connor initiated the opening leg of a two-timer by combining with brother Paurick to win the Hurley’s SuperValu five-year-old mares’ maiden aboard newcomer Ballingers Corner.

The Jeremy-sired Ballingers Corner disputed the running with Caletta Storm until edging ahead on the run to the final fence.

Latino Fling then closed in second spot to get within a half-length of the victorious brown at the line whilst recent Ballindenisk runner-up Cailin Dearg was doing all of her best work at the finish, a further one-length adrift in third.

“She’s a nice mare that was bought as a yearling and she will probably now go the sales,” said the winning handler of Ballingers Corner, owned by the Three Dudes Syndicate that incidentally includes former Galway hurler Pierce Piggott.

The former champion doubled up aboard his wife Carol O’Donnell’s A Distant Place in the Tattersalls five-year-old geldings’ maiden.

A Distant Place, having finished third on his debut at Dromahane in November, was put to sleep at the rear and he only started to edge closer on the long run from two out as Sunset West still held sway upfront.

The winning son of Sunday Break powered past on the outer before the last and with the pursuing Get Your Own exiting here, the Galway raider asserted to beat Mister Sweets by six lengths.

“He did it well and he’s a grand speedy horse that stays well,” said A Distant Place’s handler John Staunton of the 2018 Goffs Land Rover sale graduate that’s out of a winning half-sister to French Grade 1 jumps winner Top Of The Sky, that is now bound for Wednesday’s Goffs UK sale at Doncaster.

The Colin Bowe-trained Mt Leinster Gold made a victorious return to action in the Irish Thoroughbred Breeders’ Association mares’ winner-of-two.

Mt Leinster Gold, representing acclaimed tenor Anthony Kearns who went to school with handler Bowe, made her way to the front with Barry O’Neill five out and she drew clear from the last to see off Dubai Daisy by one and a half lengths.

Winning rider of Mt Leinster Gold, O’Neill said: “She’s a smart mare that handles all types of ground. She will come on for the run and will be kept pointing to get more experience this season.”

There were a couple of close finishes and the judge was called into action following the Drury Tea & Coffee and Gain Equine Nutrition six-year-old and upwards mares’ maiden for novice riders as three participants flashed across the line with nothing to separate them.

The camera showed that Ocean Point, who took off in front at the last, held on to beat Blue Milan and Honest To Goodness by two short heads under her owner/trainer Martin Corrigan’s brother Kevin.

“She’s a proper honest mare that stays well and we could sell her now,” said the elder Corrigan of Mainstown debut third Ocean Point.

The ‘Shark’ Hanlon-trained Rewritetherules hinted that another productive campaign awaits when coming home in front under a confident Tom Hamilton in the Fogarty Bros Car Sales open.

Last season’s dual hunter chase winner Rewritetherules was deliberately restrained and, having edged closer setting out on the final circuit, the triumphant six-year-old eased past before the last to beat Wounded Warrior by three and a half lengths.

"He's a horse that came back in a lot stronger this season and I thought that the ground wouldn't be good enough for him here today. He will now run in the farmers’ race at the Punchestown point-to-point next month and will then hopefully go for the Cheltenham Foxhunters," said Hanlon of the Dermot O'Rourke-owned Rewritetherules

Half Shot, a fine sixth on his debut at Dungarvan last season, made a victorious return in the Kennedys Bar & Pegus six-year-old geldings’ maiden.

Half Shot led from half-way with Chris O’Donovan and he held on grimly in the closing stages to thwart Get Supreme by a short head.

"We've had a tough six months as my horses were sick last summer. This is my first runner in a point for the owner/breeder Robert Hodgins. If not sold, he could run in the winner-of-one at Belharbour, said handler Norman Lee."

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