Successful Point to Point on Sunday

Tom Red On Sunday last the County Roscommon Hunt held its second Spring Point to Point at Lisbride just outside the town on the main road to Athlone with the kind permission of the land owner Mr. Michael McSharry, Castlerea and the races were ran off in brilliant sunshine with only one or two showers. The going was soft, soft to heavy in places but the showers kept the ground loose and the horses were able to get through it.    The first race the 4-Y-O Maiden sponsored by The Abbey Hotel, Roscommon was divided and the first division was won by the Thomond O’Mara trained, son of Old Vic, Dunkelly Castle ridden by Roger Quinlan. The partnership also provided the well-fancied Kilcascan in the 2nd division Kilcascan which unfortunately fell at the 2nd last when holding every chance. The race was won by Inspector Traci trained by Willie Codd and ridden by his brother Jamie Codd from Private Developer.     The Joint Masters sponsored the 5-Y-O Geldings Maiden which was also divided and the first division was won by Gaelic Grounds trained by Pat Fahy and ridden by his 17 year old son Conor who sits his leaving Certificate in June. It was Conor’s 2nd winner as a jockey. Sona Sasta was 2nd and Castle Banquet was 3rd. The 2nd division was won by Good Man Jack ridden by Wesley Hayes for owner/trainer Cyril Larkin from the well-fancied Molly’s Garden trained by Jason Titley with Skip The Present 3rd.   In the Winners of 1 sponsored by Autoworld Casey, Athlone Justforthesakeofit followed up his win at Monksgrange last month coming home in the hands of Colin Motherway ahead of Tarablaze in 2nd and Blank Hand 3rd. Ard Na Rathaig trained in Laurencetown near Ballinasloe by Eoin Larkin was 4th. The winner, a son of Turtle Island, is a nice horse and winning for the 2nd time in 3 runs, should be able to go on and win on the track.   In the Open Lightweight there was a small but quality field with Donie Walker’s Johnnies Pride holding off the late challenge of the odds-on favourite Rock On Tom and completing a quick double for the jockey Colin Motherway. The race was sponsored by the Percy French Hotel and EDA Construction and had the smallest field on the day with 7 horses going to post.    In the Mares Maiden sponsored by DG Roofing Williamstown and Beirne & Beattie Engineering, Roscommon Even Better lived up to her name when pulling off a nice gamble from 3/1 to 6/4 favourite. The Even Top mare beat No Half Measures by 3½l with Alkindly finishing a well-beaten 25l further back in 3rd.    The final race, which was for novice riders, sponsored by Ward and Burke Engineering, Kilcolgan, was the third contest to divide and 12 runners went to post in each division. In Division 1 Bubbly On Ice did turn out again after his 2nd at Castletowngeoghan but jockey Jenny Geraghty, sister of Barry and Ross, had to settle for 2nd again. The race was won by Toby Park with Former Glory 3rd.    The most controversial race of the day was reserved for the last race, the 2nd division. Munroe Man was the easiest winner of the day coming home by 25l from Peggy Maddock with the 3rd Dark Flight a further 25l away. Unfortunately the jockey Mr P A Harris failed to weigh in and following the inevitable stewards inquiry the winner was disqualified and Peggy Maddock promoted to first with Dark Flight 2nd and Toned 3rd.   In the Leading Riders Championship, sponsored by the Railway Veterinary Clinic Loughrea, for the year the winner was Andrew Duff who rode a winner at the autumn meeting and another one early this week. Colin Motherway also rode two winners but lost on a count back of placed rides.     Once more there was a fine crowd and with 9 races, 93 runners jumping 14 fences it is great to report that there were no casualties to man or beast. The point to point racing is going from strength to strength in Co Roscommon and the next meeting, scheduled for November, is eagerly looked forward to.