DEIRDRE Goggin and David Brickley shared the riding honours at a very wet Ballingurteen Road Trotting races on Sunday. Both riders rode three winners on the day.
The ongoing battle for supremacy in the top grade pace continues with heavyweights Dream Maker and Conway Tiger serving up another titanic battle in the finale, to send those who braved the elements home happy.
Conway Tiger, with Goggin in the plate, set her usual fast pace but was never more than a length away from their arch rival Dream Maker. The order remained the same at each of the three turns.
Facing into the final two furlongs it looked as if Conway Tiger had done enough but, like in the previous meeting in Drimoleague, Dream Maker rallied late to get up in the shadow of the post to win by a length. Both will resume their war of attrition at the big memorial day in Skibbereen in two weeks’ time.
Goggin had earlier ridden a treble. Newcomer Hillside Mustang upset the odds in the opening novice pace. This son of Harmony P – bred by Hillside Farms in Leap – edged out Lakeview Romeo in a driving finish with race favourite Big Jim only third.
Owner of Hillside Farms, Pete Hill saw another one of his home-breds, Hillside Dartanian, score in the Grade E. This was a popular success for owner Curry O’Sullivan, who purchased the six year old at the end of last season and gave Goggin the third leg of her treble.
Rhyds Ponder was the most impressive winner of the day and was the easiest of Goggins’ three wins. Sent to the front, the early favourite backers were counting their winnings long before the end of the mile and a half contest.
Maithi Buachaill followed up on his Drimoleague win with another top drawer performance in the Grade B. David Brickley sent the winner to the front at the opening turn and never looked in danger of defeat. He had four lengths to spare over Rhyds Trixter, who had a torrid time at the second turn – if he were to improve on his turns he could trouble the winner.
Meadowbranch Kiki gave Brickley his third winner in the ultra competitive Grade D where race favourite Tactician Du Lys only got into the race late on and was never catching the winner.
Novice (Donal McCarthy Memorial Cup): 1. P Hill, Hillside Mustang, Deirdre Goggin; 2. M Kelleher, Lakeview Romeo, Marie Moloney; 3. G Kane, Big Jim, T O’Leary.
Grade C (William O’Donovan Memorial Cup): 1. N Forbes, Rhyds Ponder, Deirdre Goggin; 2. D McCarthy, Meadowland Tom, A McCarthy; 3. C Caverly, Easter Lily, D Brickley.
Grade B (Sean McCarthy Memorial Cup): 1. P Kane, Maithi Buachaill, David Brickley; 2. Deasy/Hurley/Keohane, Rhyds Trixter, J O’Reilly; 3. D McCarthy, Sky Security, A McCarthy.
Grade E (Denis Dullea Memorial Cup): 1. C O’Sullivan, Hillside Dartanian, Deirdre Goggin; 2. A & S Buckley, IB Rapido, T O’Leary; 3. H Bennett, Wellfield Damian, Marie Moloney.
Grade D (Jeremiah Keohane Cup): 1. Shanahan/Brickley, Meadowbranch Kiki, David Brickley; 2. G Kane, Tactian Du Lys, T O’Leary; 3. R Joyce, Coalford Sharp Cat, M O’Reilly.
Grade A (Paddy Keohane Memorial Cup): 1. Shanahan/Mycock, Dream Maker, David Brickley; 2. D Goggin, Conway Tiger, D Goggin; 3. N Forbes, Mountain Dew Lad, T O’Leary.