Star Best For Racing Christmas Rated Hurdle 2m
- (4yo+, 2m, 9 runners)
- Winner €11,040 2nd €2,560 3rd €1,121 4th €640
- Going: Soft, Soft/Heavy in places
- Surface: Turf
- Winning time: 4m 5.30s
- Off time: 13:23:12
|2nd||2 Leah Claire||2||7/2|
|3rd||9 Star Of Aragon||4¼||14/1|
Araku Valley (IRE) 86
|6||160 11-6 h||J J Hanlon||B Hayes (5)||120||16/1|
Leah Claire (IRE) 90
|7||160 11-6||W McCreery||M P Walsh||123||7/2|
Theatre Mill (IRE) 28
|5||160 11-6 h||P Nolan||B J Cooper||119||14/1|
Dysios (IRE) 41
|5||156 11-2||D Cullen||B J Geraghty||120||8/1|
Face Value 13
|5||156 11-2 p||A McGuinness||D E Splaine (3)||123||11/1|
Inis Meain (USA) 44
|6||156 11-2||Denis Hogan||D E Mullins||121||11/8f|
Owennacurra Milan (IRE) 14
|8||156 11-2 t||Miss M L Hallahan||I J McCarthy (3)||120||12/1|
|9||156 11-2||A J Martin||R Walsh||123||5/1|
Star Of Aragon (IRE) 28
|7||156 11-2 b||J Nash||T E Doran (7)||120||14/1|
Supreme Carolina (IRE)
||5||10-13||W P Mullins||R Walsh||5/1|
Denis Hogan was on the scoresheet on St Stephens Day and can continue the good work with INIS MEAIN. A winner just once over hurdles, he's been in superb form on the Flat having been placed in three Listed events since September and will enjoy the testing ground. Pires is one of the most versatile horses in training and must be respected though he's probably better over fences these days but Star Of Aragon arrives in good form having run really well in a tough Fairyhouse handicap last time. Leah Claire will be fancied though she was behind the selection in the Listed Oyster Stakes at Galway in September when receiving 8lb. Araku Valley created a shock when landing a Clonmel maiden but this is very much tougher.
Dysios (IRE) 11-2 (10-7) Rear of mid-division, not fluent 3rd, headway into 5th after 2 out, soon pushed along and no impression approaching last, kept on one pace, 6th of 11, 9l behind City Slicker (10-6) at Punchestown 2m hcp hdl 0-140 in Nov.
Leah Claire (IRE) 2-1fav (10-8) Tracked leader, keen hold, lost place a little 3 out, 2nd again and challenged from before 2 out where slight mistake, switched run-in and soon led, stayed on well, won at Limerick 2m hdl gd in Apr beating Absolutlyfantastic (11-6) by 3 1/2l, 7 ran.
Star Of Aragon (IRE) 16-1 (9-10) Led, joined 3rd and well clear of remainder, led 3 out, soon ridden, headed next, no extra before last, 4th of 13, 11l behind Pink Coat (9-10) at Fairyhouse 2m hcp hdl in Nov.
Inis Meain (USA) 6-1 (10-8) Always prominent, tracked leader in 2nd until led after 3 out, strongly pressed early straight and headed last, no extra run-in, 5th of 18, 2l behind Summer Star (9-10) at Leopardstown 2m hcp hdl 0-140 gs in Mar.
Pires 8-1 (11-7) Towards rear, pecked 7 out, 9th after 5 out, no impression approaching straight, 9th of 10, well behind The Amarillo Kid (10-7) at Cork 2m gd in Oct.
Araku Valley (IRE) 33-1 (10-13) Mid-division, good headway approaching 3 out and led after flight, ridden 2 out, kept on strongly from before last, eased close home, comfortably, won at Clonmel 2m mdn hdl sft in Oct beating Who's That (10-4) by 8l, 17 ran.
Theatre Mill (IRE) 12-1 (9-3) Prominent, disputed lead from 3rd, headed 3 out and soon ridden, weakened quickly entering straight, 11th of 13, 39l behind Pink Coat (9-10) at Fairyhouse 2m hcp hdl in Nov.
Face Value 33-1 (10-1) Led, joined 3 out, headed before next, no impression from before last, 7th of 16, 8l behind Jennies Jewel (10-11) at Navan 2m 4f hcp hdl.
Owennacurra Milan (IRE) 14-1 (10-13) Towards rear, headway 3 out, no impression in moderate 6th from before straight, left a place better and ran on from last to dispute moderate 3rd on line, 3rd of 11, 16l behind Upazo (11-6) at Fairyhouse 2m hdl.