Conron sweeps through to lead under Paddy Kennedy
©Healy Racing Photos
By Donal Murphy
Conron sprang a massive 66/1 surprise in the Kildare Hunt Club Maiden Hurdle, completing a double on the card for trainer Jessica Harrington.
Without a win in seven starts on the level for Mick Halford, the son of Mastercraftsman was making his debut over flights this evening.
Settled behind the leaders by Paddy Kennedy, the John O'Hagan owned victor wasn't fluent two out and was soon pushed along in eighth.
He was ridden on the outer in sixth approaching the last, sweeping through to lead in the closing stages, going on to prevail by three parts of a length.
Daybreak Boy finished second at 11/4 under Dylan Robinson for Henry de Bromhead, while Santiago De Cuba (3/1) was another half a length back in third with Barry Geraghty aboard for Joseph O'Brien.
Come To Me, who was backed from 5/2 into 15/8 favouritism on-course, was squeezed for room when coming with his effort on the run-in, and eventually had to settle for sixth.
Harrington, who was earlier on the mark with Light That, said afterwards: "I've always thought he was a really good horse and I was dying to run him on the Flat but he's only rated 34 and I couldn't get him into anything.
"He was to run in Cork but he went ballistic in the box going down and trod on his shoe. He's actually still got staples in his forehead.
"I said we'd come here near home and he might get to the racecourse without committing suicide!
"I schooled him last week and he jumped wonderfully but I had no idea whether he'd stay.
"He was ridden handily and made a slight mistake at the second last but Paddy said he was only getting going. Suddenly he just picked up.
"It's great for John O'Hagan as he has two horses with me and the other one is Charcor which finished third in a maiden at Tipperary the other night.
"I have no idea how good a race that was but we'll go for a novice now. He obviously loves good ground. I might put him into a Flat race also."
D.J. Mullins, rider of Come To Me (FR) trained by W.P. Mullins, reported to the Clerk of Scales that his mount met with with interference.
C.A. Landers, rider of Halsafari trained by Michael J. Bowe, reported to the Clerk of Scales that his mount jumped green.
R.A. Doyle, rider of Mac's Nephew trained by Conor O'Dwyer, reported to the Clerk of Scales that his mount burst a blood vessel.
A. McCurtin, rider of Earl Of Bunnacurry trained by Eoin Gerard Barry, reported to the Clerk of Scales that his mount raced keen.
The Irish Horseracing Regulatory Board Veterinary Officer examined Mac's Nephew, trained by Conor O'Dwyer, at the request of the Stewards and reported the animal to be have had blood on the nose as a result of exercise induced pulmonary haemorrhage.
Additional reporting by Gary Carson