O'Brien's first winner as licensed trainer
Published 07/06/2016 | 16:14
Joseph O'Brien (23) had his first winner as a licensed trainer when beating his dad, Aidan, in a memorable first race at Gowran Park.
Ridden by his brother Donnacha, Joseph's Justice Frederick drifted out to 6-4 in the market for Gowran's Irish Stallion Farms European Breeders Fund Maiden but he made light of that, holding on gamely from Leo Minor.
Leo Minor is trained by Aidan O'Brien and was backed into 6-5 favourite, but was a length and a half behind the winner at the line.
Justice Frederick runs in the colours of Maxwell Morris and Gowran is the track most local to both Morris and O'Brien. It is 23 years to this very weekend when Aidan trained his first winner. Joseph, Aidan's first son, had been born just a couple of weeks previously.
Joseph did not become a fully-fledged trainer until June 6 but he was the one who had King Leon and Carriganog perfectly prepared for the McHale Mayo National in Ballinrobe as they fought out a thrilling finish in the colours of J.P. McManus.
It was King Leon and Mark Walsh who found reserves close home to deny Barry Geraghty, who had chosen Carriganog, by a length and a half with six lengths back to Yes Tom in third. The Midlands National at Kilbeggan could now be on the agenda for both King Leon and Carriganog.
The 2m7f handicap hurdle at Ballinrobe went the way of Just Likeold Times for Jonathan Moore and Paul Nolan.
A few hours after Minding confirmed herself to be the best filly in the business by taking the Investec Oaks in stunning style, Aidan O'Brien would have been thrilled to see Order Of St George pass his first exam of 2016 with flying colours in the Listed Saval Beg Stakes at Leopardstown.
Last year's 11-length winner of the Irish St Leger on Champions Weekend at the Curragh is now as short as 6-4 with Paddy Power to land the Ascot Gold Cup after disposing of Fact Or Folklore by four and a half lengths.
It was a big night for Aidan's son Donnacha who was riding Order Of St George for the first time and was also successful on 2-1 favourite War Decree in the opening 7f maiden and 5-2 shot Cockatoo Island in the 1m maiden. Aidan's daughter Ana also got in on the act when steering the 11-2 shot Udogo to victory in the Grant Thornton Apprentice Handicap.
Cabarete was much the best in the 2m5f handicap hurdle at Tramore, Aidan Fogarty's charge scoring by five and a half lengths under Seán Flanagan at odds of 16-1.
Wexford rider Flanagan exploded from the traps the next day at Tramore as he rode the opening two winners on the cards. Flanagan came from the clouds to land the 2m maiden hurdle on Sparkalark for Vincent Hally at odds of 7-1, and he did something similar on the David O'Brien-trained Icelip in the 2m handicap hurdle.
Fixtures: Fairyhouse, Wednesday, June 8 (first race 2.05 p.m.); Leopardstown, Thursday, June 9 (first race 5.55 p.m.); Clonmel, Friday, June 10 (first race 5.35 p.m.); Navan, Saturday, June 11 (first race 1.55 p.m.); Limerick, Saturday, June 11 (first race 6 p.m.); Downpatrick, Sunday, June 12 (first race 2.05 p.m.); Cork, Sunday, June 12 (first race 2.20 p.m.).