Donagh Meyler celebrates his big win aboard Lord Scoundrel
PICTURE: Patrick McCann (racingpost.com/photos
By Andrew Dietz 5:40PM 27 JUL 2016
Report: Galway, Wednesday
TheTote.com Galway Plate (Grade A) 2m6½f, 4yo+
The 5lb conditional, sporting the distinguishing green cap for Gigginstown House Stud, was in a handy position swinging round the final bend and finished strongest of all in an exciting finish.
On the run to the line there were six horses fanned across the track – three in the Gigginstown colours but not including favourite and past winner Road To Riches who failed to recover from an early mistake – but none could match the acceleration of Lord Scoundrel in the dying strides.
Meyler, 20, was having his first ride for Elliott, who ended a five-year wait for a winner at the Galway festival on Tuesday night.
The trainer, who saddled a total of five runners in the race, said: “He was one of the three we fancied and it’s worked out great. We trained a few for it this year and it worked out.”
Two trainers dominate
The first six home were from two stables as Willie Mullins was somehow denied victory with Alelchi Inois (16-1), Ballycasey (10-1) and Devils Bride (16-1) following the 10-1 winner home in that order, while Elliott was also responsible for Clarcam in fifth and sixth-placed Shadow Catcher.
Ruby Walsh dictated matters on Ballycasey and the grey was still full of running in the home straight as Meyler directed Lord Scoundrel to the stands.
As Ballycasey began tire, stablemate Alelchi Inois looked a real threat on the far side but Lord Scoundrel showed plenty of desire to snare his fifth win over fences.
‘He flew home up the hill’
Meyler, who is based with Tony Martin and rides last year’s winner Quick Jack for his boss in Galway Hurdle on Thursday, said: “Gordon had Lord Scoundrel spot-on for today and he was brilliant the whole way. I got a nice start but I missed the second so it took a little time to get him back into his rhythm.
“He was always travelling down the back and he was jumping great. I got a lovely run down the inner the whole way round and he flew home up the hill.
“My agent Ciaran O’Toole got me on Lord Scoundrel so I have him to thank. It’s still sinking in and it’s great.”
Mullins somehow denied
Mullins could not have come closer to winning the Plate for a second time after saddling a 2-3-4. He said: “All three of mine ran fantastic. Alelchi Inois likes this track and we’ll look at this race again next year. He’s not a winter horse as he wants good ground.
“Ballycasey jumped great, which was good see after his run in the Grand National and falling at Punchestown. Along with Devils Bride they will probably go to Listowel for the Kerry National in September.”