By Dan Walsh
A first and last race double for Davidstown trainer Paul Nolan was the highlight at today’s races run at Bettyville Park.
Valentia Lady (2/1), winner of a bumper in November 2019, was a good winner for Nolan in the first divide of the Loch Garman Mares Opportunity Maiden Hurdle with Jordan Gainford, Caim, sporting the familiar John Brennan colours.
Sent to the front before the final flight, she was ridden and extended her advantage on the run-in, going on to score by three and a half lengths.
Afterwards Paul Nolan said; “She is a nice mare and is a winter type. It’s great that the ground is safe and you could run anything on it. I’m just delighted that she has won her maiden hurdle now and won the €5,000 bonus as well.”
Nolan’s double was achieved when Jeremys Jewel (15/8 fav.) owned by loyal owner Phil Byrne scored by a length and three-quarters in the Hook Head (Pro-Am) INH Flat Race ridden by champion point-to-point rider Barry O’Neill.
Paul Nolan said; “We think she will improve a good bit from that. Barry thinks she has enough pace for the flat, so we will look at things like that, maybe over a mile and a half. She seems to love that ground and I’m just delighted now that she has gone and done it.”
Cashel jockey Mike O’Connor completed a 34/1 double at Wexford with a chance spare ride aboard Brogine in the Tuskar Handicap Chase having scored on Cavalry Master in the previous race – a novice chase.
The day’s Tote aggregate was €97,008 compared with €85,259 last year.