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McBratney hails McParlan after Triolet's gutsy triumph

 

By Ron McKnight

Triolet - trained in Crossgar by Colin McBratney - won the competitive handicap hurdle in the opening session of the Down Royal Summer Festival. With Northern champion point to point rider Noel McParlan in the saddle, the local horse got a dream run up the inside prior to the penultimate hurdle to lead and won going away.

McBratney said: "He was serious. Maybe we were making too much use of the horse, he showed there he has a turn of foot. Noel McParlan thought one thing - to make sure he set sail as soon as he could and take the speed out of them behind."

The featured Galway Plate Trial supplied a thriller. Sandymount Duke set off in front and gave a bold display of jumping, but was headed by Devil's Bride at the second last.

However, Sandymount Duke rallied bravely to prevail with Devil's Bride third. The other Gigginstown runner, Net D'Ecosse, stayed on to claim the runner-up spot despite unseating jockey Jonathan Moore just after the line.

The winner, owned by Ronnie Wood of The Rolling Stones, was partnered by Robbie Power for Jessica Harrington. Power said: "He's always been tough but I was going as hard as I could. I knew a good jump at the last and I would get past Devil's Bride."

Rashaan, partnered by Sean Flanagan, showed his liking for the course when landing the novice hurdle, adding to his Grade 2 victory at the venue in November. Winning trainer Colin Kidd said: "The plan after that is to go for the amateur riders race on the Monday of Galway. He got the job done."

Theatre Wine attempted to make all in the beginners chase but fell at halfway, leaving Plain Talking in the lead. Several held claims at the penultimate fence, where Definite Income fell. Kalopsia then fell at the last, with Colla Pier - with Robbie Dunne aboard - taking the win.

Gordon Elliott and Davy Russell combined to win the maiden hurdle with Knockmaole Boy denying the gamble (8/1 to 7/4 favourite) on Mountain Rock. Elliott's assistant trainer Ian Amond said: "He was probably entitled to win."

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