The last night of racing in Kilkenny for 2017 featured a nine race card. The fastest time of the night came in the eighth race in which Drumcrow Obama stepped back in trip to land the spoils.
Ballygur Santa started best and got the bend in front of Moynevilla Annie. The leader kicked five lengths clear out of the second as Drumcrow Obama improved into third spot.
Ballygur Santa was still five lengths in front turning for home, but now the flying Drumcrow Obama was the one closest. As the race entered the business end, the Karol Ramsbottom trained Drumcrow Obama was in full cry and the son of Razldazl Jayfkay and Expert Jess easily picked off Ballygur Santa on his way to a three and a half length success in 29.24.
It was a good night for trainer Brian Ellard, who scored a double while Ratchies Aratzi bounced back to top form also.
The first race was level early before Rays Dream and Arabian Topper went to the bend together. The former went on to hold a length lead at the second turn and maintained that advantage into the third bend.
Arabian Topper continued to run the rail and joined Rays Dream off the last. As the line approached, Arabian Topper stayed on well to get the better of Rays Dream by a half a length in 29.97.
The second race was a five dog affair. Milky Bar led up on the rails and was never headed from that point.
Trouble behind the leader at the opening turn left Milky Bar six lengths clear out of the second. Steam Engine kept up the chase but he was never catching Milky Bar.
The all the way winner had eight and a half lengths to spare in 30.13.
Sals Express was sent off a hot favourite for the third race. Peaky Lad started best and led into the first bend.
The slow starting Oldburrin Diva got a dream run up and ran an excellent first bend to move within two lengths of the leader going down the back stretch. Oldburrin Diva ran the back stretch strongly to hit the front rounding the third.
In the latter stages Oldburrin Diva cleared away to score by four lengths in 29.81, with Sals Express coming though for second spot.
Despite shifting a bump at traps, Hillview Harry easily led up from trap 2 in the next contest. Showing his early dash, Hillview Harry got seven lengths ahead of Flomur Pete out of the second turn.
The challenger shaved a length off into the third but Hillview Harry still had a healthy cushion. Pops Miracle ran on late in the day to get second but the Brian Ellard trained Hillview Harry was home by four lengths in 29.98.
There was no stopping the favourite Ratchies Aratzi in the fifth race. The 5/4 shot was in front at trap rise and led easily into the bend.
Both Ballygur Henry and Usain Colt tried to give chase but neither managed to get within striking distance. Ratchies Aratzi ended a winless run of seven races as she romped home seven and a half lengths clear of Usain Colt in 29.38.
The sixth race was won from the front by Acres Hill. The winner went up best from trap four and built up a three length lead over Breretons Droopy at the second bend.
The lead went up to five lengths as the long-time leader turned for home. In the latter stages Acres Hill began to fade as Ascot Grace came home with a rattle. The gap diminished dramatically but Acres Hill held on by a half a length in 29.87.
The seventh was another race won from the front. This time victory went to Howsyerdaymissus trained by Brian Ellard.
After leading around the opening two bends, Howsyerdaymissus held a length advantage over Ballydaniel Sky going down the far side. The lead was up to two lengths by the third and Howsyerdaymissus was in control.
Gortkelly Julia came through to finish second but could not catch the one length winner in 29.31.
The last race of the year proved to be a good one for the bookies. Trumera Quarry led up from trap five and just got around the bend in front, shipping a few bumps on the way.
The pace setter held a two length lead over the odds on jolly Kildrenagh Bully at the second bend, a lead that she maintained into the third as Scouser joined in the chase.
The 5/1 chance continued on her merry way and came home four and a half lengths clear of Kildrenagh Bully in 29.51.
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