Walk In The Park Four-Year-Olds Prove Unbeatable At Punchestown
Given that Walk In The Park sired Douvan and Min from foal crops of 33 and 22 respectively, expectations of his first Irish four-year-olds have been high, and they proved worth waiting for at Punchestown’s point-to-point bumper meeting.
The son of Montjeu has covered books high in quality and numbers since moving to Grange Stud, including three-time Listed winner Sway. Her resulting produce, Limerick Lace (4f Walk In The Park - Sway, by Califet), could hardly have made a more impressive debut on Monday, when running out a nine and a half length winner of the opening fillies’ bumper, chased home by favourite Jenny Flex (Walk In The Park).
Winning rider Derek O’Connor was taken by his mount, saying, “Limerick Lace was highly thought of beforehand by Gavin. It was a nice performance and I would say it was a nice race. She has a lovely cruising speed.”
Trained by Gavin Cromwell for JP McManus, Limerick Lace becomes the fourth winner bred by Mrs Noreen McManus out of the mare.
Ernest Gray (4g Walk In The Park - Emily Gray, by Flemensfirth) completed a quickfire double for his sire when rallying to take the next under Barry O’Neill. How Will I Know (Ocovango) made a promising debut in second, as did the eventual third Mythical Hero (Soldier Of Fortune).
Bred by Suroben Ltd, Ernest Gray was sold to Colin Bowe’s Milestone Bloodstock at the Goffs Land Rover Sale for €62,000.
Bowe and O’Neill doubled up in the two and a half mile bumper with another exciting newcomer in Last Quarter (4g Walk In The Park - Lunar Path, by Night Shift). The bay had clearly impressed at home, given that he was sent off favourite, and though headed approaching the two furlong marker, battled back well to score by a length and a half.
Owned by JR Brennan in partnership with Milestone Bloodstock, Last Quarter was bred by Sweetmans Bloodstock at his sire’s base Grange Stud.