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Emperor reigns at Limerick

Tony Martin has a very bright prospect on his hands in the shape of facile Limerick winner Noble Emperor.

Snapped up by JP McManus after making a successful debut for the County Meath trainer in a Navan bumper, the 6-4 favourite travelled smoothly in the hands of Mark Walsh, who didn't have to get serious to ease him 13 lengths ahead of Drumacoo in the INH Stallion Owners EBF Maiden Hurdle.

Martin said: "He did it grand, and is a big old-fashioned type of horse. We were going to start him off in point-to-points but decided to give him a shot at a bumper instead.

"His next run depends on what way the ground goes, and he may go chasing next season."

Moonlight Boy, also carrying the McManus colours, had to pull out all the stops to justify 4-5 favouritism in the Keywest Play Live 20th June Maiden Hurdle.

On his return to two miles, the Christy Roche-trained gelding was always prominent, although he was made to work by Tawseef, who went down fighting by three-quarters of a length.

Tooreen arrived at the Sporting Limerick Mares Handicap Hurdle in search of a hat-trick, but her busy period took its toll and she couldn't make the frame in a race won impressively by Gordon Elliott's 16-1 chance Clara Mc Cloud.

Ludo Et Emergo unshipped David Splaine at the last on his most recent appearance at this circuit, but he put that behind him with an authoritative display under Davy Russell in the Irish Stallion Farms EBF Beginners Chase as the 100-30 favourite.

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