Gordon and Liz Doyle score a double as WP and Gigginstown record their own at Clonmel!


Life never ceases to surprise me especially where horses are concerned and my ability to ignore not only what I see in front of me and useful information given to me!

On Thyestes Day at Gowran Park I saw a little horse run well in a maiden hurdle. Named Claire Pet, I saw it come home fifth at 66/1 and put a note beside the 7 year old son of Pierre as one to watch.

Trained by Gordon Doyle at Knockmullen House Stud on the outskirts of New Ross, this young man has started to knock out a few winners this season following the installation of a new gallop and a reanalysis of his racing programme. Now pushing just a little harder, his horses are fitter and running better. But back to my lesson!

Not only that, I met Mary Doyle , the trainers mother and a Hickey from the legendary Garryrichard Stud , after the race at Gowran Park and she indicated that their jockey that day Michael Darcy was very hopeful afterwards that the horse was capable of winning!

Another note was taken, I hadn’t been exactly told by the horse itself, but by sources pretty damn close to it!

So what did I do at Clonmel yesterday, I didnt miss it, I actually ignored it!

With Michael Darcy getting the leg up on Claire Pet, they faced 8 rivals and two and a half miles on pretty heavy ground at the Co Tipperary track. Taking up closer order 3 hurdles out Darcy hit the front before the last to win.

Returned at 11/2, you see it wasn’t just me that had spotted him in running, he was winning for the first time for his owner breeders Peter and Mona Aspel.

Speaking afterwards Doyle indicated that “He would be even better on a firmer surface”

These Pierre horses seem to progress with time and age , the Doyles stand the son of Sadler’s Wells at their stud with some real success.

These were not the only Doyle’s to win at Clonmel as Liz Doyle, no relation I believe, struck again when Snowell won the amateur riders handicap hurdle. The Crossabeg , Co Wexford based trainer gave Co Cork based JJ Burke the instructions here and they justified favouritism at 9/2.

The Well Chosen 7 year old took it up 2 hurdles from the finish to record his first win for owner breeder Fionan O’Driscoll.

The promise he had shown at Fairyhouse in January was built upon and the support for him in the betting ring was well founded.

Willie Mullins is a fairly regular and successful visitor to Clonmel
and the Co Carlow based maestro took the first two races on Mercedes Benz day at Powerstown Park.

The rescheduled Grade 3 Mercedes Benz Novice Hurdle saw Don Poli win in the hands of Bryan Cooper for Gigginstown House Stud over 3 miles. This 5 year old Poliglote a winner at 9/2 was winning his second race over hurdles and could have a future over fences.

Some of the more fancied horses didn’t perform here so maybe the form could be slightly suspect but the Jim Dreaper trained Goonyella was an eyecatching second at 16/1. Some of the bigger staying chases could be within his compass this season.

The father and son partnership of WP and PW Mullins took the opening conditions hurdle with Perfect Gentleman at 5/2, with the Jackie Mullins owned 9 year old son of Kings Theatre recording his third win. Rubi Light who ran here seems to be a light of former days for the Hennessy family so where he goes next might be unclear.

The Sweeney family from Castlelyons, Co Cork made the trip to the track a profitable one when Daliyan, a Red Ransom 5 year old easily won in the hands of Colman Sweeney.

The concluding bumper of the slightly truncated six race card saw Nina Carberry and Gordon Elliott win with the 7/2 chance Drunken Counsel. This Scorpion 5 year old carried the colours of Gigginstown House Stud to give them a double on the day.

Bred by Waterford City based dentist Con O’Keeffe from his mare Kilbarry Demon this horse improved on his New Years Day third to win comfortably.

It was really good to see Clonmel stage this meeting, even better to see two Wexford trainers have a Doyle double, as two of the sports ginormous forces , WP Mullins and Gigginstown House Stud recorded their own!


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