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Its a family affair for Helen O'Connor

A piece of history was created at Ballyarthur point-to-point when Little Token followed in the footsteps of her mother, Special Token, by winning a four-year-old maiden at the first time of asking.

Bred by Dr O’Keeffe, Special Token, a daughter of Witness Box, carried the colours of her handler Helen O’Connor when beating the geldings to win the Tallow four-year-old maiden at a price of 8/1 in February 2009 under Dinny Spillane.

Her achievement all the more notable, given that her success against geldings has not yet been repeated at the Tallow course in the ten subsequent renewals.

The bay mare had shown a great attitude on that occasion to hold off the attentions of Jamie Codd and Crannaghmore Boy to prevail by three quarters of a length.

She has clearly given that will to win to her off-spring on the evidence of her first daughter, Little Token, who created that piece of history when making the perfect start to her racing career.

Representing the same connections, having been trained by her owner-breeder Helen O’Connor, Little Token was sent off at the same price as her mother had been ahead of her debut success, and the daughter of Milan made good progress to come from off the pace and defeat Castlegrace Rose by a length in the hands of Shane Baragry.

Ms O’Connor could not have wished for a better start with the three foals that Special Token has produced since being retired to the paddocks.

In addition to Little Token, she has produced a three-year-old gelding by Mahler which was sold by his breeder as a foal for €14,000 at the Tattersalls Ireland November National Hunt Sale.
Special Token returned to the Beeches Stud resident stallion to produce a filly which is now two and has also been sold.

The Tallow winner is once again in foal to the Queen’s Vase winner, and was due on March 16th, but connections are being made to wait for the latest new arrival.

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