Joy for locals at Down Royal on St Patrick’s Day

Joy for locals at Down Royal on St Patrick’s Day

25 March 2020

THE annual St Patrick’s Day meeting at Down Royal went ahead in wet conditions and behind closed doors.

The meeting provided two local winners, the first  coming in the Hunters Chase when recent North-Down point-to-point winner Winged Leader was successful for Portrush owners John Hegarty and Jennifer O’Kane. Trained at Derrylin by David Christie, the winner was ridden as usual by Barry O’Neil. 

The second local victory came in the concluding bumper race when Banbridge farmer Mark O’Hare, who rode his first ever winner back in 1999 at Comber point-to-point on Cinders Slipper, owned by Scobie Curran of Bishopscourt and trained by Liam Lennon at Newry, won in the well-known colours of Magherafelt owner Tilly Conway, this one being trained by Dermot Red’ McLoughlin. 

Saturday’s North-Down point-to-point, due to take place at Kirkistown, had to be called off on Friday afternoon by order of the Irish Horse Racing Regulatory Board. A big disappointment to all concerned, as a large entry had been received. The other meetings at the weekend were also called off.

At Thurles on Saturday the pro/am bumper race was won by Major Robinson in the colours of former jockey Steven Crawford. Ridden by Jamie Codd, the winner is trained by the owner’s brother, Stuart, in Larne.