Good Friday racing a great success in Lingfield and Mussellburagh
WHEN IT comes to national hunt racing, jumping is paramount. If you don’t jump you won’t win.
That was exactly the case in the big race on the opening day of the Fairyhouse Easter festival on Sunday.
The Willie Mullins trained Ballycasey was sent off a warm favourite in the four runner event. He was travelling like a dream and had his opposition in trouble approaching the second last, but he met it all wrong and came crashing down.
His exit allowed Rebel Fitz in for a somewhat lucky win. Mick Winters’ charge looked under pressure up to that and although he was joining Ballycasey coming to two out, its debatable as to whether he would have won.
In the end, he stayed on to record a good length victory and he looks sure to have a profitable summer and he will probably end up going for the Galway plate.
Away from that race, it was a nightmare of a day for favourite backers with a host of big priced winners coming in, which culminated in 50/1 shot Moon Racer racing away with the bumper.
It was a fairly quiet weekend on the level, with attention firmly focused on Fairyhouse.
Tipperary did stage a competitive card on Thursday evening.
Once again the headlines went to Jim Bolger with the County Carlow man saddling a good treble.
The Coolcullen handler has begun the season in red-hot form and it could pay to follow him as the season progresses.
Last Friday was a historic day for racing. Lingfield and Musselburagh played host to the first ever racing on Good Friday.
It is still a bit of a thorny issue but it was a great success,with over 8,000 people passing through the turn stiles at Lingfield Park to watch young apprentice Can Hardie become the first jockey in Britain to rider a winner on Good Friday.
It was the venues biggest crowd in years and it gave a nice bit of coverage to all-weather racing which to be fair isn’t everyone’s cup of tea.
It’s a shame we didn’t follow the B.H.A’s lead and also put on a Good Friday card but there is always next year.
Irish trainer Pat Shanahan is becoming a bit of a regular visitor to England now and he took full advantage of Good Friday racing at Musselburgh.
The Kilkenny handler sent out That’s Plenty to land the Tote Exacta Pick 1 and 2 handicap.
Having finished second on his sessional reappearance in Ireland, he bolted up in this race and looks a horse to keep on side