Three victories within the space of ten days might still not enable Bandon Roc to match the attractions of salmon fishing on the Bandon River in County Cork but the WOW Partnership won’t be complaining if the current flow of success continues.
Kim Bailey’s six year-old cruised home a 26 length winner of the opening 2m 3f handicap hurdle at Towcester on Wednesday, fully justifying odds of 8/13 in the hands of Henry Morshead.
John Stanley, one of the syndicate owners, revealed the son of Shirocco had been named after Bandon Roc was found close to the Irish river bank but the gelding looked anything but a lost soul as he stormed clear of his rivals in the heavy ground.
Wide margin successes were perhaps to be expected on a day when the Neil Mulholland-trained Solighoster registered an equally bloodless victory (14 lengths) after being sent off the shortest priced Towcester winner in living memory, 1/10 ON in the 1m 7f novices’ hurdle under Noel Fehily.
Like Bandon River, Solighoster appears to have boundless scope after making it four wins from five starts in a short career which has so far included an Irish point to point, National Hunt Flat races and now hurdle outings.
Along with respite for favourite backers there were enough Towcester shocks in store on an afternoon when the steady rain did its best to dampen spirits.
Powys trainer Kerry Lee sent out a 6/5 favourite in the form of Krakatoa King in the 2m 5 1/2f chase but even with the assistance of champion jockey Richard Johnson could only finish third behind Buttercup while largely unconsidered bumper runner
Destined To Shine showed his 11 opponents a clean set of hooves, at least figuratively speaking, in the afternoon’s concluding event, Destined To Shine had not set the world alight on his career debut at Warwick in January and was sent off at 25/1 largely as a result but he made all the running under Sam Twiston-Davies to come home four lengths clear of Drumlee City whose owner Harry Redknapp was on hand to witness his debut.
Liam Treadwell won the Grand National for Venetia Williams on board 100/1 winner Mon Mome in 2009 and is still plying his craft. Yesterday would have been one of his more rewarding days as he partnered a chase double with Buttercup (8/1) for Williams and then Snowball (7/1) in the 3m event.
Arbuthnot said: “He’s very brave and needs heavy ground. He stays forever but doesn’t want it sticky so we were glad to see the rain which helped them go through it.”
Two Swallows (11/4 joint favourite) is aptly named as his dam was One Gulp and she helped trainer Ben Pauling reach a best ever total of seasonal winners after success in the 3m mares’ handicap hurdle.