Thepartysover (grey) comes home in front from Fair Dilemma, William Wordsworth and Chestnut Charlie
©Healy Racing Photos
Offaly handler Gerry Hayes got his name on the score-sheet for the first-time since May 2007 when Martin Burke got there in time on Thepartysover (12s into 9s) in the Martinstown Opportunity Handicap Hurdle at Naas.
There were plenty going better than the winning grey from two out but as a son of Cloudings out of a Roselier mare, Thepartysover (twice a winner when with Michael Moran) was always likely to grind it out well.
The 9/1 shot stayed on well from the final flight to get up and defeat Fair Dilemma by half a length.
Hayes commented: "It was a great ride – he gave him a great spin. We expected him to do it in Limerick last time but we got our day today.
"The horse deserved it. I needed it too – I'm only a small fella and it's hard to keep going.
"I needed it so badly it's unreal. I thought he was in trouble three out as he was boxed in but he sat and waited.
"I was afraid this might have come a bit soon but he's a tough horse.
"That's his third win over hurdles and hopefully we might still get one over fences with him.
"I only have two in training – I'm only a part-time trainer.
"It's very hard to compete with the big-boys when you're buying one for a couple of thousand but days like this make it worth it." (GC & EM)