Frank Curran wings to victory in GAIN/Alltech Autumn Grand Prix League opener
Frank Curran opened the GAIN/Alltech Autumn Grand Prix League with a victory at Ravensdale Lodge. Ensuring Hawkswings lived up to his name, Curran flew home in a seven-horse decider to clinch the win in the €3,000 Grand Prix.
A former winner of the Six-Year-Old Championships at the Dublin Horse Show with Clem McMahon, the now eight-year-old Hawkswings is by Heartbreaker out of the Laughton’s Flight-sired dam Crewe Lass.
Curran took over the ride on Hawkswings at the beginning of this season and has featured in the 1.35m Ulster Region and Summer Tours before making the step up to 1.40m level. A familiar mount in ways, Hawkswings shares his dam with Curran’s Premier Series partner New World.
Curran commented, “It’s a super family and they do have similar personalities. Hawkswings is getting better each week – this is only his fourth 1.40m class and he jumped super.”
John Floody, a familiar face in the winner’s enclosure at Ravensdale Lodge, had to settle for the runner-up position on this occasion with Mise Le Meas. Floody had provided a few tense moments for Curran with a deceptively fast round aboard the eight-year-old son of Cruise On but proved slightly off the mark when the clock showed 38.15.
Fractions separated the top three with Paddy O’Donnell having set the original standard at a fault free 38.58. O’Donnell had played pathfinder around the shortened and raised course with Minority Report.
Sven Hadley proved next fastest on the day but couldn’t come home inside the 39 second mark drifting wide of this with Quanbell posting 40.38. Kenneth Graham was the only other rider on the day to keep a clean sheet on his second outing logging 41.92 with the Limmerick-sired Orbiting.
Dermot Lennon completed the top six with Clinton Jack, concluding his round on a score of eight faults in a time of 41.07.
With weather conditions less than favourable, full credit must be given to the team at Ravensdale Lodge who provided a top class facility for the opening leg of the GAIN/Alltech Grand Prix League.
The league now moves north with the next round taking place on Saturday at the Meadows EC.
GAIN/Alltech Autumn Grand Prix League Ravensdale Lodge 13th September 2015 Result
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- Frank Curran Hawkswings 0/0 38.03
- John Floody Mise Le Meas 0/0 38.15
- Paddy O’Donnell Minority Report 0/0 38.58
- Sven Hadley Quanbell 0/0 40.38
- Kenneth Graham Orbiting 0/0 41.92
- Dermot Lennon Clinton Jack 0/8 41.07