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Danny joy as mum's the word in Tsun's stunning triumph

By Ron McKnight

Published 07/05/2016

Pole position: Mystic Princess and Derek Fox land over the last on the way to winning Living The Dream Mares Handicap Hurdle at Downpatrick last night
Pole position: Mystic Princess and Derek Fox land over the last on the way to winning Living The Dream Mares Handicap Hurdle at Downpatrick last night

A Mother and son duo left their competitors in the shade on a sunny evening at Downpatrick.

Mags and Danny Mullins teamed up to claim the opener with Tsundoku.

Trainer Mags said: "She jumped well. She might mix hurdles and the flat - I'll discuss future plans with the owner (fellow trainer Edward Lynam's wife Aileen)."

There was a local success in the concluding bumper when Bertie Bell - trained beside the track by Brian Hamilton and ridden by local jockey Declan Lavery - triumphed.

The mares handicap hurdle had a trio in contention after the last, however it was Sligo trainer Mark McNiff who further enhanced his strike rate at the track when Mystic Princess scored.

McNiff said: "She ran well here a couple of times and showed a liking for the course. (Jockey) Derek (Fox) got the run of the race and she's not ground dependant. I might aim at our local track next later this month."

Favourite backers would have been happy when Theo hit the front and appeared set to score in the long distance hurdle but Tellthemnuttin was steadily making ground under jockey Dylan Robinson, a former talented apprentice on the flat.

The victory justified the trip from Limerick for trainer Willie Codd who said: "I don't know where the early morning money (40/1 to 14/1) came from - I don't bet.

"I'm just delighted for the syndicate who leased her from a pal of mine.

"She's been running on terrible winter ground - that's the first time she's got decent going.

"The young lad gave her a peach of a ride. I didn't know him but his agent said he was good - he was right!"

Rise Of An Empire in the Ryanair colours of Michael O'Leary proved the runaway winner of the extended distance hurdle with Bryan Cooper in the saddle.

Trainer Noel Meade said: "He appreciated that better ground. I might aim at a novice hurdle at Kilbeggan next time now he's started to pick up."

Redclue, partnered by Robbie Power, was the easiest winner of the night in the handicap chase giving the owners - a Donegal-based syndicate - a fifth success.

Trained in Meath by Gillian Callaghan, the favourite was racing off a much lower mark than his hurdles rating.

Callaghan said: "He lacked a bit of confidence over fences last season but he did that nicely.

"He may come back here for the next meeting."

Shake It Up collected the hunter chase.

Belfast Telegraph

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