Gorey duo nominate Loch Garman Cup winner
Gorey coursing enthusiasts Doyle and Behan nominated the winners of the prestigious Loch Garman cup, Stephen's Owen, at the 87th annual Loch Garman cup meeting of the Wexford and District Coursing Club held on the excellent course of Woodlands in Enniscorthy on Saturday and Sunday last.
While the feature event produced some excellent buckles throughout the two days, one also witnessed some excellent coursing in the remaining Stakes, some of which had to be separated by the sharp eye of Judge Tom Lawlor so close were the buckles.
Despite the incessant rain of St. Stephen's Day there was a notable increase in the crowd on previous years.
The coursing on the opening day produced its quota of surprise results but it was the performance of 'Needham Ridge' which really caught the eye in the Derby Trial Stake.
Listed on the card as a reserve, the Brian Matthews trained 'Needham Ridge' came all the way from Newry, Co. Down, to avail of some defections.
Throughout the opening round the Newry based dog immediately caught the eye, coursing superbly on what was excellent ground despite the rain, to see off his rivals, with his final course when disposing of 'Voice', from the Flannery and Byrne kennel in Tipperary, with a superb final course leading from slips to take the verdict.
The Lisloose Accord Oaks Trial Stakes was won by Kate Fitzgerald's 'Corbraighe Holly' who cut loose in the second half of the straight to see off a determined 'Kingsmill Ariel' from the Barntown kennels of John Roche.
John is son of the late Aidan, a truly great supporter of the club and who produced some outstanding winners down through the years, but who recently passed away.
Curracloe's Alan Carroll enjoyed success in the Dr. Pierce Stakes with Dillrock Darby, despite some tough courses earlier, still showing enough strength and guile, to gain the turn on the hare from 'Butterstown Kate' from the King kennels in Waterford.
The highlight of the final day was the Loch Garman Cup.
In the first semi-final, Stephen's Owen gave an excellent course from the clip to hold the challenge of the Declan Roche nominated 'Macroney Rebel'.
In the second semi-final the Dessie McCabe nominated 'Trapper Harry' just shaded the J. Doyle's nominated 'Skellig Sunlight'.
The final brought about huge local interest for 'Trapper Harry', owned by Richie Doyle, Cleariestown, and Terry Rossiter, Drinagh, is trained by Anton Butler, Rathaspect, and was nominated by Des McCabe, Chairman of the Wexford club.
Unfortunately for 'Trapper Harry 'it was one course too many as the Doyle and Behan nominated 'Stephen's Owen' turned in a superb final course to get the better of his rival over the final 50 meters of what was a course to demonstrate the high standard of coursing throughout the popular two-day event.
Wexford Coursing Club Chairman, Des McCabe, was delighted with the standard of coursing over the two days.
'We had excellent coursing over the two days with the hares making the dogs really work. It was yet another success story for the club,' he said.
Mr. McCabe also thanked the Codd family and Enniscorthy Coursing Club for the use of their excellent facilities which enhanced the two days coursing.
He also thanked everyone who helped make the two days such a success.
Judge: Tom Lawlor.
Slipper: Alan Kelly.
Working Members Stakes (Meyler Perpetual Cup and Tony Kirwan Perpetual Trophy) - Final: Eugene McCabe's Battstreet Kitty bt. Anthony O'Neill's Ballymorris Vic.
Dr. Pierce Stakes & Pierce Perpetual Cup - Final: Alan Carroll's Dillrock Darby bt. J King's Butterstown Kate.
Derby Trial Stake & Dick Fortune Perpetual Cup - Final: Brian Matthews Needham Ridge bt. Flannery and Byrne's Voice.
Lisloose Accord Oaks Trial Stake (Sponsored by Seamus Begley and Liam Lynch) - Final: Kate Fitzgerald's Corbraighe Holly bt. John Roche's Kingsmill Ariel.
Loch Garman Cup (Sponsored by quickPark@Dublin Airport) - Final: Doyle and Behan nom Stephen's Owen bt. Dessie McCabe's nom Trapper Barry.
ML Hickey Stakes and Perpetual cup - Final: J Walsh's Two Steps Closer w.o. F. Doyle's Sunfire City w/d.