It would be remising of me this morning as I sit to write my blog not to mention the outstanding achievment by Joseph O Brien in Melbourne. 

At a young age as a jockey he had done so much, and yet as he dipped from Jockey to trainer at a crossroads in life that most people go from school to college he was taking over training duties armed with future winners on the flat and jumps. People who obsess about betting in racing would be lost at the touching quotes from Aiden O Brien post-race in Melbourne, where he proudly stated that he was hoping he would finish second, and that Joseph would win. With all the money that racing provides it’s that pride that courses through the veins, pride of family for the O Brien’s and pride of place for us Irish with Ireland having a one-two-three.

On this side of the world it was a busy weekend of action. Poli Roi was the winner of the opening maiden hurdle in Down Royal. He didn’t jump that well and wandered around but he still did the job comfortably. He is clearly a very exciting horse, his lack of jumping failed him in Galway, but he has improved and he is one that looks likely to play a part in bigger races in the new year. Melon was also a winner in Down Royal, and he to will likely come on for the run as he is still only on his fifth run. He made a mistake at the last with the race at his mercy but manged to steady himself to beat stablemate Coquin Mans by four and a half lengths. 

The JNwine Champion chase was the highlight of the weekends action up North, but it certainly didn’t go to plan for punters. Our Duke last year’s Irish National winner and many man’s dark horse for bigger honours this season was sent off the 5/6 favourite. Alas it was clear that something was a foot with the Robbie Power mount and soon dropped out, we know now he scoped abnormally post-race so hopefully he will return to action very soon. 

Outlander in white cap

The winner was Outlander who got the better of Road to Respect, the latter who has asserted himself as a real contender for the spring championship races. Outlander who was disappointing since his Leopardstown win, rallied to win the feature under Jack Kennedy. There was another cracking finish after that as Noel Meade’s Disko got the better of Enda Bolger’s Ballyoisin by half a length. I was very impressed by Disko as Sean Flanagan led throughout and travelled sweetly. He finished third in Cheltenham last year but followed that up with an easy win in Punchestown. Noel Meade has never softened his glór for the horse and the world really is his oyster. Patrick Mullins won both bumpers in Down Royal for Gordon Elliot, but it was Rapid Escape that really impressed. Patrick took him around the outside at the 3-furlong marker, and I liked the way he galloped to the line. He will be one to follow this year and further. Paddy Power where the main sponsors in Cork on Sunday and it was the power up front from Bamako Moriviere that was the highlight. He led until the 6th and was headed but travelled so well from two out it was curtains for those in behind. Jury Duty who was sent off evens favourite couldn’t land a blow. He had the race at his mercy in Listowel, and followed that up with a defeat of Tombstone in Fairyhouse. It is hard to trust him yet, but he is a horse of a lot of talent.

Disko looks like a horse to follow

Article wrote by Carty Ban