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    Kilbarry Saint proves superior to her competitors
Kilbarry Saint proves superior to her competitors
Image courtesy of The Irish Field

Kilbarry Saint proves superior to her competitors

Kilbarry Saint put on a remarkable display in the two-mile 80-95 handicap hurdle at Clonmel, securing a resounding victory.

Her recent second-place finish in Gowran, which showcased her improved form, established her as the favourite at odds of 10/3 for this lower-tier race. The notable addition of jockey Jack Kennedy to The Niffler, who entered the contest with a winning mark of 95, caused the odds to shorten to 7/2. However, both Kilbarry Saint and The Niffler faltered, finishing well behind in seventh place. 

Benefiting from a 5lb reduction by jockey Danny Gilligan, Kilbarry Saint glided effortlessly towards the lead as they approached the straight. The early frontrunner, Half Off Six Pence, appeared vulnerable, and Kilbarry Saint capitalised on the opportunity, surging past with more than two furlongs left to run. Under Gilligan's composed guidance, Kilbarry Saint extended her advantage and cleared the final hurdle without breaking a sweat, triumphing by a commanding six-length margin. 

The rest of the field paled in comparison, with Tingarran Express (10/1) emerging as the best of the rest, a considerable ten lengths ahead of Half Off Six Pence (16/1). Fourth-placed A Nod To Getaway (7/1) rewarded each-way punters with a respectable return. Trainer Con O'Keeffe shed light on Kilbarry Saint's journey, acknowledging her initial disappointment and the subsequent efforts to understand her quirks. 

O'Keeffe expressed confidence in the mare's potential to achieve black-type status, while also hinting at the possibility of fortuitous circumstances aligning in her favour. Kilbarry Saint's triumph on this occasion marked her long-awaited maiden victory after six unsuccessful attempts.


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