By Dan Walsh
National champion point-to-point rider Barry O’Neill, who celebrated his 33rd birthday yesterday was still in celebratory mood today at Ballindenisk, Co. Cork today where he rode three winners and reached the 700th career point-to-point winner mark in fine style.
Colin Bowe saddled both ‘division’ winners in the maiden race for four-year-olds with Ballabawn in division one ridden by James Kenny by two and a half lengths and Barry O’Neill began his treble in division two aboard Luner Contact who did the business by a neck! This double was Bowe’s 40th winner of the season as he heads for another championship crown.
O’Neill had winner number two for Carlow handler William Murphy as Miss Mae West took division two of the maiden race for mares aged five years or over by two and a half lengths.
Number 700 came up for O’Neill with his third success of the day – Some Man for David Christie by two lengths – in the Open Race. This is a milestone for the affable Ballindaggin rider who will be crowned champion rider for the sixth successive season in a few weeks’ time.
Also point-to-point races at Stradbally, Co. Laois today with doubles for Bertie Finn, Oulart, who has six wins to his credit – all during the 2021-2022 season – and Sean Staples, Duncormick. who has a total of 19 career winners.
Finn won the first two races on the card starting with Old Page by four lengths for handler Peter Flood in the maiden race for five-year-old geldings and then aboard Good Source for handler David O’Brien by eight lengths in the Winner of Two race.
Staples scored on Clatterbridge for Louise Jones by three lengths in the five-year-old adjacent maiden and made it a double on The Forge Hill for Sean Doyle, Ballindaggin, who came home alone in the Mares Open Race.