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Blue the star of King show

Connor King grabbed the spotlight at Cork with a fabulous 14,725-1 four-timer highlighted by the success of Royal Blue Star in a strong renewal of the Platinum Stakes.

The Jessica Harrington-trained mare (20-1) added to her gains at Killarney last month with a decisive Listed success as she came with a sweeping late run down the outside under her well-regarded claiming jockey.

Bronte cut out much of the running but was worried out of contention inside the final 200 yards, while the capricious Snow Queen lost acres of ground at the start and flew at the death. But Royal Blue Star arrived deep inside the final furlong to strike by a length from Akira.

King said: "She jumped a bit slowly and I gave her a chance early on. At the two pole I thought she might be placed, but she flew home. When Jessica asked me to ride the horse I knew I'd been doing something right.

"It's my first treble (later to become a four-timer) and my biggest win and it's at my local track. In September I'm going back to school to do my leaving cert in Kanturk, Co Cork. I'm going to try and mix school and riding. I'm apprenticed to David Wachman."

The talented young rider, 16, has impressed many observers this season and he initiated his great evening when leading inside the final furlong on Tom McCourt's Kiss The Stars (16-1) before holding favourite Harpist by three-quarters of a length in the ITBA Working For Southern Regional Breeders Handicap.

The trainer said: "When your yard is out of form it's best to get the in-form rider! Connor King has the magic touch. They all seem to run for him. Kiss The Stars has surprised us all since the day she was third in Naas. She has never showed us that sort of pace at home. She surprised me today as I didn't think she would be sharp enough for her first handicap."

It was the King-McCourt partnership again in the second division of the 'Tote Trifecta Rollover' Handicap when Horsewithnoname (10-1) came with a long sweeping run down the outside to edge out Hangar Five by a short head in a desperately tight finish.

King also secured the Mallow Apprentice Handicap on David Marnane's 11-4 favourite Almadaa, grabbing the lead half a furlong out and keeping Doonard Prince at bay by three-quarters of a length.

The trainer said: "That's Almadaa's first win on grass (he has won four at Dundalk), but he's a horse who shows up every day of the week, is really consistent and has given us great craic over the years. He is very genuine and while he is in again in a big pot race at Sligo tomorrow, I'll see how he is tomorrow morning before making a decision on his participation."

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