Success over water
O’Brien, McDonald, Jacob on song
Plenty of Wexford eyes were smiling in horse racing circles across the water in the past week, with Model county trio Tom O'Brien, Pat McDonald and Daryl Jacob riding nine winners between them.
O'Brien, a nephew of trainer Aidan, topped the charts with four victories, with McDonald scoring three times, while Jacob helped himself to a Cheltenham double.
The week started off on a high on home soil for Wexford connections with three national hunt winners at sunny Roscommon on Monday.
Point-to-point champion, Colin Bowe, picked up his second track winner in the past couple of weeks in the opening mares' maiden hurdle when Mark Walsh showed good strength on Golden Flowerpower (15/8) to hold off the persistent challenge of Ruby Walsh by a short head on the Gigginstown hotshot, Theatre Wine (8/11).
Mikey Fogarty kept up his recent hot streak with a comfortable win on 14/1 outsider, Forjoethepainter, for Cavan owner-trainer, Anthony Mulholland, the horse having his first outing since March.
Jamie Codd had only to shake up the odds-on favourite, Monbeg Worldwide (1/2), to maintain his great run in bumpers, this one again for Gordon Elliott and Gigginstown.
On Tuesday at Gowran Park, the versatile Coolfighter (9/1) won over one mile six furlongs on the flat, under Donal Lenihan, the horse's fifth win of the season for Davidstown-based Noel Dooly.
Joseph O'Brien saddled a winner at Thurles on Thursday, landing the two-mile maiden hurdle with 7/2 shot Zig Zag, ridden by Jody McGarvey.
Across the water, Adamstown's Jonathan Moore made all aboard the Jamie Snowden-trained Brave Encounter (5/2) to win the conditional jockeys' handicap chase, while on the same card Tom O'Brien landed the final race when he steered 5/1 chance Khismet home in a handicap hurdle for James Flint.
Back on Irish soil, on Friday evening Aidan O'Brien was in the winners' enclosure in Dundalk as the Seamie Heffernan-ridden 7/4 favourite London got the better of stablemate Schubert by a nose to claim the one-mile maiden.
Pat McDonald enjoyed a fruitful week with three triumphs, riding his second winner at Doncaster on Friday as he sprang a surprise with 33/1 outsider Muntabab, following up Tuesday's victory aboard Jaywalker (16/1) at Newcastle.
He was first past the post again in Doncaster on Saturday when the Mark Johnston-trained 14/1 shot Masham Star stormed to a smooth success in the seven-furlong nursery.
At Punchestown on Saturday, Seán Flanagan steered the Noel Meade-trained hotpot Disko to a facile victory, with the 9/10 favourite eight lengths too good for Last Goodbye from Liz Doyle's yard.
Turning attentions to the marquee jumps track on the other side of the Irish Sea, there was joy on the double for Daryl Jacob as he claimed victory aboard Wholestone (2/1f) from the Nigel Twiston-Davies yard in a novices' hurdle and quickly followed it up in the next race when steering 9/2 chance Sceau Royal to an eleven-length success for trainer Alan King in a two-mile hurdle.
Tom O'Brien also had a winner at the famous Cotswolds track as Golden Doyen (11/1) came out on top by a short head in the Pertemps Network Handicap Hurdle.
O'Brien bagged his third and fourth winners of the week with a bloodless victory aboard the Colin Tizzard-trained joint favourite On Demand (2/1) in a handicap hurdle at Wincanton on Sunday, followed by a handicap chase win on Gentleman Jon (5/1) for the same trainer.