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Report | Ballinaboola 11th November 2018

It was a red-letter-day for handler Ashleigh and owner Michael Murphy of Redbridge Stables, as the pair enjoyed a double on the day.

Fearless Fracas took the opening Monbeg Stables four-year-old maiden for the duo, in the hands of Gary Murphy.

Having just his third start, the imposing sort was always to the fore of proceedings and jumped notably well throughout.

Two lengths down in second when left clear three-out, the son of Fracas galloped resolutely to the line, coming home six lengths in front of Is A Real Champ.

“Our horses just weren’t right last year and they weren’t performing. We thought he would run well today and he will be sold now,” said the winning owner.

Cool Destination
provided the Murphy’s with a quick double in the Horse & Hound Hotel five-year-old geldings’ maiden.

Once again ridden by Gary Murphy, the good-looking sort was given a patient ride in mid-division before making good progress to take a share of the lead with three to jump.

By Dubai Destination, the five-year-old stayed on gamely in the closing stages to see-off Classical Daytime, who stayed on well from a long way back to finish three lengths back in second.

The winning owner said: “This was the plan for a while, as we thought the track would suit him. I am not too sure what we will do with him now - he could be sold.”

The Wexford Hunt six-year-old and upwards maiden saw My Forever Friend gain due compensation, as the 10-year-old was unlucky to fall in the closing stages when going well at Damma House just seven days earlier.

Having tracked the eventual runner-up for much of the contest, the Shark Hanlon-trained winner got up in the dying strides to deny the front runner, Winsor Vixen, by half-a-length.

Owned by Barry Walsh, the winner is rated 80 over hurdles and the Carlow-based handler will look to exploit that following this maiden victory as he said: “The horse deserved that today and I think we will go back over hurdles with him now.”

Handler Benny Walsh has his string in good order this season and Tuff Nano put in a very taking performance to come out on top in the NitroFert five-year-old and upwards adjacent mares’ maiden in the colours of local owner Peter Aspel.

Ridden by the handler himself, the five-year-old newcomer put in an exhibition of jumping from the front, before staying on readily to win by a comfortable eight lengths over Robert McCabe’s more experienced Proper Ticket.

“We fancied her today. We will see what the owners want to do now, but we might head to the sales or take in a winners’ race,” said the Wexford-based handler.

Gerry Spain preserved his unbeaten record this season after steering home Some Are Lucky to victory in the Ballywalter Farms open for novice riders.

Content to track the leaders off a strong early pace, Spain produced the Sam Curling-trained gelding to challenge after the third-last, before the seven-year-old powered clear to record an easy ten-length success.

“He needed to step up here again and he did. I got another great spin and we will stay between the flags with him,” said owner-rider Gerry Spain.  

The Cooney Furlong winner of one looked a match race on paper between the two market principles Winged Leader and Decor Irlandais, however that failed to materialise, as the latter was let down by his jumping and ultimately paid the price when three of the five runners came a cropper at the third-last.

The Donnchadh Doyle-trained winner Winged Leader was clear at the time having swept through to pick up the advantage turning in and he was left to return 15 lengths clear over Singing Banjo.

The only four-year-old in the line-up, the Monbeg Syndicate-owned son of Winged Love was following up on his recent maiden success and is now a winner of two of his five starts to date.

“I think he is a straightforward type, he jumps great and quickened up well there. He might head to the sales or go for another winners’ race,” said Doyle.

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