Gowran: Danny delivers career highlight at Listowel

Gowran with Michael O’Leary

Gowran with Michael O’Leary

CAREER HIGHLIGHT-20-year-old Danny Mullins enjoyed the greatest highlight of his career to date as he picked up the spare ride on Faltering Fullback in last Wednesday’s Kerry National at the Listowel Racing Festival. Danny only found out he was riding Faltering Fullback at 10.30am last Wednesday morning, but odds of 33/1 and also rank outsider with a poor run of recent form, Eric McNamara’s 9-year-old was surely written off as a no hoper. However, no one could have written the script.

Faltering Fullback was surprisingly amongst the leading rank of front runners turning into the home straight, before beginning to take charge of proceedings. With the race under control, Faltering Fullback enjoyed a decisive lead going towards the final fence.

The final obstacle was negotiated safely, and he stormed home to a half a dozen length victory with stable companion Questions Answered filling the runner-up spot to make it a 1-2 for the Eric McNamara stable, and give the stable their third Kerry National success.

It was Danny’s finest victory to date having landed the €160,000 pot, and he was unlucky not to have added to his winners account later on in the day.

Riding Mumbo Jumbo for his mother Mags in the maiden hurdle, Danny was just touched off by Barry Geraghty and Ted Veale following a desperately close photo-finish, with a hair’s breath just separating the two. Nevertheless, Danny cherished his most valuable moment of his career to date, as he now begins to concentrate on a career over the National Hunt following in the footsteps of his father Tony.

Despite the attraction of the All-Ireland Senior Football final in Croke Park, a healthy attendance gathered in Gowran Park last Sunday as a 7 race mixed card was held in autumnal sunshine.

The feature event was the Group 3 Fillies Denny Cordell Lavorack and Lawades Stakes, and there was a strong Cross-Channel presence.

Veteran trainer John Dunlop was represented by Beatrice Aurore under the mount of Johnny Murtagh.

Henry Cecil trainer of superstar colt Frankel was represented by Andromeda Galaxy ridden by Frankel’s regular pilot, Waterford born Tom Queally, while there was a historic first runner in Gowran for the Queen who was represented by Momentary under the guidance of Joseph O’Brien.

Dermot Weld’s Caponata went off the 11/8 favourite, but could never mount a challenge only finishing 8th.

An exciting close finish transpired and a surprise result emerged and Aloof from the David Wachman stable gave Billy Lee success at odds of 12/1 as she held off the strong challenge of Beatrice Aurore with the John Oxx trained Shebella back in 3rd.

There was success for Slieverue trainer Eoin Griffin as 10/1 shot Norther Bay won the Gowran Handicap hurdle making virtually all the running, while Willie Mullins was successful as Blazing Tempo won the Mares hurdle as last years Galway Plate winner followed up his recent Kilbeggan success, with Tony Mullins Clarach ridden by Danny back in 3rd.

Overall, a good day’s racing and attention now switches to the two-day October meeting on Friday 5th and Saturday 6th October.

floodlit campaign-Cleere’s Bar got their Floodlit league campaign off to a winning start when overturning a 2-0 half-time deficit to run out 3-2 winners against Gathabawn FC 3-2 last Tuesday week in the Loreto Cleere’s Bar struggled initially to get to grips with the pace of the game, and trailed 2-0 at the interval. However, they began after the half-time interval, and started to create chances. All three goals were carbon-copied efforts. Excellent crosses from the wing by Colm Kennedy found Brian Whelan who on each occasion headed past the goalkeeping to dramatically turn the game around. Next week, Cleere’s play AP systems.

GOWRAN ABBEY NURSING HOME-Gowran Abbey Nursing Home invites you to support their fundraising event in aid of Cois Nore Cancer Support Centre Kilkenny this coming Saturday 29th September at 3pm in the Nursing Home. The auction is with the always imitable George Candler, while there is also a raffle with entertainment and refreshments provided.

BEGINNING OF SCHOOL YEAR MASS-The beginning of school year mass for Gowran National School takes place tomorrow afternoon at 12.45pm . All parents and any member of the Eucharistic community of Gowran are most welcome to attend and be part of the celebration.