Plenty of Guts and Glory on show at Glin cours­ing

The Kerryman (Tralee Edition) - - SPORT - Glin meet­ing

THE Des­mond Cup meet­ing at Glin is al­ways one of the high­lights of the cours­ing sea­son and this year’s re­newal didn’t dis­ap­point, pro­duc­ing two ex­cel­lent trial stake win­ners and a vin­tage per­for­mance from Watch­man in the fea­ture event.

Bal­ly­mac Enya (Coola­vanny Bingo/ Bal­ly­mac Town) was an em­phatic win­ner of the Oaks ticket. Priced at 5/1 prior to cours­ing, the Liam Dowl­ing trained May pup set out her stall early with a con­vinc­ing win over Porti­nard Walk. The man­ner of her suc­cess saw her odds fall to 7/4. Com­fort­able successes over Chat­ter­box Fray and Mar­shals Amelia pro­pelled the win­ner into a semi-fi­nal pair­ing against the Bren­dan Matthews trained Vanessa. Bal­ly­mac Enya how­ever dom­i­nated the course and eas­ily pro­gressed to the fi­nal by a three-length win­ning mar­gin.

The fi­nal was an all Kerry af­fair with Bal­ly­mac Enya on the red col­lar against the long odds favourite Oh Wow on the white for Tar­bert trainer John Flynn. Both bitches were evenly matched on their re­spec­tive semi-fi­nal per­for­mances and it was Oh Wow who showed in front leav­ing slips. How­ever, her ad­van­tage was to be short lived, as Bal­ly­mac Enya showed ter­rific early dash to take con­trol of the buckle and she ex­tended her ad­van­tage on the ris­ing ground to al­most three lengths at the open­ing turn.

While John Flynn may have struck the cross­bar in the Oaks qual­i­fier, he cer­tainly struck gold in the Derby equiv­a­lent with his im­pres­sive home-bred Guts And Glory (Ra­zor Ash­more/ Upup And Away). Well sup­ported in the long odds book, the Fe­bru­ary pup re­ally looked the part over the open­ing two days of com­pe­ti­tion and was as short as 1/3 for suc­cess by fi­nals day. He was al­ways in con­trol of his semi-fi­nal buckle against Busi­ness Card and ran out a length win­ner on the top of the field.

The re­main­ing semi-fi­nal was a bye for Til­ford Tor­nado fol­low­ing the with­drawal of the im­pres­sive Bal­ly­mac Whis­per due to in­jury.

The de­cid­ing course was a one-sided af­fair, Guts And Glory dis­played tremen­dous early foot to open an early ad­van­tage and he ex­tended his lead with ev­ery stride through to the open­ing score to land a six-length vic­tory. The win­ner looks a re­ally im­pres­sive sort and will be on many short-lists for Clas­sic suc­cess.

Watch­man kicked off his sea­son on the best pos­si­ble fash­ion when he claimed the Des­mond Cup for own­ers Basil and Bernie Ho­lian. Hav­ing landed the cov­eted Ir­ish Cup at Pa­trick­swell on the fi­nal week­end of last sea­son, the eyes of the cours­ing world were firmly fixed on the Kevin Barry trained run­ner last week­end and he cer­tainly didn’t dis­ap­point. He posted some blis­ter­ing clocks en route to the fi­nal, which in­ci­den­tally was a re­peat of last year’s Ir­ish Cup de­cider. The re­sult, how­ever, re­mained the same, as Watch­man showed su­pe­rior pace to his ri­val to run out a com­fort­able win­ner. The win­ner is a real class act and is with­out doubt the lead­ing player in this sea­son’s All Age events.

The sur­prise re­sult of the day came in the All Age Bitch Stake when the Michael Spil­lane trained Lochbo Stacey (Lochbo Char­lie/ Lochbo Pearl) landed the spoils. She pro­gressed to the fi­nal cour­tesy of a bye in the penul­ti­mate round fol­low­ing the with­drawal of Silent Won­der who fell vic­tim to a hard hunt fol­low­ing her quar­ter-fi­nal suc­cess.

The West Cork owned Lochbo Stacey took on last sea­son’s Oaks hero­ine Fox­hol­low Lady in the fi­nal course. The lat­ter sur­ren­dered plenty of her early ground to her ri­val and left her­self a moun­tain climb as the course ap­proached half­way. Lochbo Stacey stayed on gamely on the test­ing in­cline and took the flag com­fort­ably by two lengths.

The ac­tion moves to Bal­ly­heigue next week­end whilst the meet­ing at the Re­gional will also see many Kerry owned run­ners in the hunt for hon­ours.

De­nis Holly spon­sor pre­sent­ing the tro­phy to the Flynn fam­ily from Tar­bert af­ter win­ning the dog trial stake with Guts and Glory at Glin. Photo by Moss Joe Browne

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